Immediate past Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) General Secretary Joyce Oduah has said that she “was severely persecuted by those who unjustly tried to bring me down for same reason.”
In a “Thank You” message to NBA members made available to CITY LAWYER, Oduah who had a running battle with the NBA leadership in the twilight of her tenure, said that she has “great confidence in the new leadership of the Bar and believe that they will, like I did while serving the Bar, uphold and defend the grundnorm of the Association, the NBA Constitution, at all times and selflessly.”
Below is the full text of her statement.
THANK YOU MESSAGE FROM JOYCE ODUAH FICMC, GENERAL SECRETARY OF THE NIGERIAN BAR ASSOCIATION (2020 – 2022)
It is with great humility and a heart full of joy, appreciation and gratitude to God and all of you, members of our great Association, the NBA, that I write this thank you message.
As you all are aware, my official service as the General Secretary of the Bar ended on the 26th of August 2022, as we successfully handed over the baton of leadership to the New Executive Committee to move the Bar forward. I have great confidence in the new leadership of the Bar and believe that they will, like I did while serving the Bar, uphold and defend the grundnorm of the Association, the NBA Constitution, at all times and selflessly.
I want to specially thank all members of association and particularly those who have supported me throughout my Service to the Bar as the General Secretary and stood by me as we passed through the very eventful last weeks of our tenure.
In line with my campaign promises, it was my resolve to serve the Bar with all sense of integrity, dedication to quality service delivery, in accordance with the NBA Constitution and upholding the rule of law , which is the primary mandate of our noble Association. This resolve, I am glad to inform you, was the panacea of my service throughout my tenure as General Secretary of the Bar even when I was severely persecuted by those who unjustly tried to bring me down for same reason.
This thank you message should have come earlier than now, but for the overwhelming, unwarranted, mala fide and desperate attack against me by people who thought they could bully and overwhelm me. Thankfully, owing to the ever abundant grace of the Almighty God and the overwhelming support I got from you, dear colleagues, I was neither overwhelmed nor bullied into silence. I will not bore you with the details of the shameful events of our last days in office as we all witnessed them together, and I strongly believe that posterity will vindicate the just. Those that peddled specific lies against me will answer in due time.
During my service to the Bar as the General Secretary and in line my promises while asking for your support to serve the Bar, we achieved successes and lifted the Bar in many ways. Some of our achievements during my stewardship are as stated below:
During my campaign, I promised our members that upon being elected as General Secretary, I will work to introduce technology into the functioning of the NBA by creating an NBA App which will serve as a one stop platform for every member of the Association. This will engage and synergize the stakeholders – lawyers, law firms, 125 branches of the NBA (now 128) and enhance easy access to NBA resources and materials. It is with great joy and delight that I inform you that after much persuasion and work this NBA APP was launched on the 25th of August, 2022 before the Annual General Meeting;
Effective management of the NBA National Secretariat;
An ICT based Innovative Secretariat;
Effective records keeping;
Effective planning and organizing of meetings;
Effective communication and management of correspondence.
In a special way, I must thank the Bar Leaders and Elders who supported, advised and guided me to achieve so much in my service to the Bar; noble Elders and Leaders that stood on the side of the truth when it mattered.
I thank my super husband who was a pillar of support throughout my tenure and especially in the last few weeks; I could not have asked for a better soulmate. I am indeed blessed to have such wonderful children who have stood and continue to stand by me. I appreciate my dear sister for her support. I am grateful to my Bishop, Archdeacon, Vicar, Priests and all the members of my church for their prayers and well wishes.
I must thank and appreciate my Secretariat staff and colleagues whom without their overwhelming support, I would not have achieved so much in office. I am also grateful to my legal team.
I remain forever grateful.
Dear Colleagues, it is with a heart full of joy and gratefulness to God that I officially inform you all that owing to my excellent service to the Bar, I was elected the Vice President (West Africa) of Pan African Lawyers Union, PALU. I am counting on your continued support in this new assignment.
Once again, I thank you all for your continued support and wish you all the best Legal Year ever in advance. I also wish the current administration a successful tenure.
My most thanks to God Almighty without whom I can do nothing.
God Bless the Nigerian Bar Association;
God Bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Joyce Oduah, FICMC.
Nigerian Bar Association. 2020 -2022