The Chairman, Body of Benchers, Justice Olabode Rhodes-Vivour has told newly admitted lawyers that the practice of Law is not a right but a privilege can be lost should they fail to live up to the requisite professional standards imposed upon them by virtue of their admission into the legal profession
Justice Rhodes-Vivour was speaking at the call to bar ceremony which held in Abuja on Tuesday, July 27, 2021.
He congratulated the new wigs and charged them to adhere to the provision of rules regarding the profession at all times.
“As a lawyer, you are an officer of the court and accordingly, you are not to do any act or conduct yourselves in a manner that will obstruct or adversely affect the course of justice.
“The practice of Law is not a right but a privilege. It is a privilege that can be lost should you fail to live up to the requisite professional standards imposed upon you by virtue of your entry into the community of lawyers.
“You must, therefore, strictly adhere to the provisions of the Rules of the Professional Conduct and maintain best practices at all times.’’
He stressed that the Body of Benchers Legal Practitioners Disciplinary Committee was always determined to discipline any lawyer found wanting or breaching set rules of the profession.
Rhodes-Vivour said that the committee had been carrying out its mandate “in a just and fair manner’’ without giving any room for compromise or ill-will.
He said that between January and July, the committee disbarred six lawyers and suspended some for between two and four years, while one lawyer was admonished during the period.
Rhodes-Vivour advised the graduates to continue to update their knowledge on both statute and case law in order to attain more understanding on especially, international jurisdictions.
While presenting the new wigs to the Body of Benchers, the Director-General of the Law School, Prof.Isa Ciroma, SAN, noted that out of the 1, 561 candidates who sat for the December examination, 880 passed.
“Four others were from previous Bar examination,’’ he said, adding that the new wigs had met all the required and set conditions by the Council of Legal Education.
“I am happy to affirm that they all have exhibited good manners and decorum during their training.
“They have also been groomed in the best ethics and ethos of our noble profession.
“The screening committee of our distinguished body carefully perused the records of each of the aspirants and found them worthy to be presented for the Call to the Nigerian Bar.’’
Ciroma said that the school had begun a special remedial course for students from the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN).
“The programme began on June 28, at the Nigerian Law School Headquarters, Bwari, Abuja. We thank all distinguished members of the Body of Benchers, for their support,’’ he said.