Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has congratulated Olumide Akpata on his emergence as the President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA).

The Electoral Committee of the Nigerian Bar Association on Sunday presented Certificates of Return to the winners of the just-concluded association’s national officers’ elections.

The president-elect, Olumide Akpata, and eight others who emerged winners in the elections were presented their Certificates of Return at the NBA national secretariat in Abuja, preparatory to their inauguration on August 27.

The low-key event attended by a handful of supporters of the elected members of the incoming executive committee of the association was presided over by the Chairman of the ECNBA, Tawo Tawo (SAN).

In his opening remarks, Tawo noted that the results of the elections which held electronically with over 29,000 verified voters, were declared within 24 hours after the polls ended at 11pm on July 30, 2020.

Tawo, who expressed concerns about disunity in the NBA, noted that there was no need for any ill-will or disaffection within the association.

He said, “The essence of NBA elections or the essence of every election is service. And if the purpose is service, why should there be ill-will and disaffection? Let us try as much as possible to be united. Let me warn that the house divided against itself cannot stand and shall fall.

“All these perceived divisions must stop. Within the NBA there are many sub-divisions. One day we may find the association of non-car owners among lawyers. Let us retrace our steps.”


Congratulating the newly elected officials, Tawo urged them not to see their elections as an avenue for personal aggrandizement.

“If you think so, you have made a mistake,” he said, adding, “Let us work together for the betterment of the NBA.”

The outgoing General Secretary of the association, Jonathan Taidi, who represented the outgoing NBA President, Paul Usoro (SAN), described the just-concluded elections as free, fair, transparent, and credible.

Although the election was characterised by disputes over the verified voters’ list, with a presidential candidate, Adesina, calling for the cancellation of the polls in the middle of the exercise, Taidi said it was a model which the Independent National Electoral Commission could learn from in preparation for the upcoming governorship election in Edo State.

He said, “I want them (INEC) to take the positive statements from this election and deliver them to Nigeria.

“The situation whereby as you are voting, you see your votes count as we saw in the NBA election will reduce post-election litigation.

“NBA is able to speak very loud that it is time. We have shown that we can conduct a free and fair election in this country.

“NBA is sending the message to Nigerians that it is possible to have a credible election.”

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