NBA-AGC 2017, Matters Arising – Elvis Asia Esq.

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This is the first time the impact of NBA is being felt by most lawyers. This clearly shows that e-voting and democratization of election processes in the NBA will eventually payoff.

In the past, NBA leadership was determined by politicians through the demonic and unconstitutional delegate system. With the introduction of ‘universal sufferage’ and e- voting, in the last election i voted a ‘brave new bar’ from the comfort of my bed based on my review of the plans and programs of the candidates on social media. Whether the mandate has been delivered as promised is a matter for debate but for the first time in my few years in the professional, I am looking forward to attending the NBA conference.

We now need to focus our attention on serious issues like continuous professional development, interest of young lawyers, legal education, proper regulation of the professional etc.

For example, what stops us from having a newsletter or journal which is distributed via emails without considering printing cost? In this age and time, you do not need to leave your bedroom or attend conferences at exorbitant cost (which thousands of young lawyers cannot afford) to improve yourself.

NBA must also redeem the image of the professional through proper regulation and professional discipline. The first step in this regard is legal reform. The truth is, NBA cannot properly regulate itself and the 2007 rules of professional conduct is grossly inadequate as a tool of enforcing discipline in the professional (is that document even legal? It was made by Bayo Ojo and not the General council of the bar).

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There is need for a new directive on advertising. With the internet revolution and the effect of social media, how do you enforce restriction on advertising? This is an area that needs urgent review. The provision in this regard in the 2007 rules is impracticable and was intended by principalities in the professional to maintain their stronghold.

Welcome to the 2017 bar conference.

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