It’s Within My Powers to Amend the RPC – Malami

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The Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN), has asked a Federal High Court in Abuja to dismiss a suit filed against him by the Nigerian Bar Association.

The suit was challenging the validity of the rules of professional conduct for lawyers in the country.

The AGF said the suit against him was incompetent and lacking in merit because its facts were founded on falsehood and hearsay.

He maintained that he was constitutionally empowered to formulate and amend the rules of professional conduct for legal practitioners in Nigeria.

In his counter-affidavit against the suit filed by his lead counsel, Maimuna Shiru, he insisted that he did not unilaterally amend the contentious law for lawyers as alleged by the Nigerian Bar Association.

His eight-paragraph affidavit against the suit was deposed to by one Michael Oni, a litigation officer in the Civil Litigation and Public Law Department in the office of the AGF.

Malami denied all allegations of wrongdoings brought against him by the NBA in the suit.

Contrary to the NBA’s claim that he unilaterally amended the rules, Malami stated that members of the General Council of the NBA were invited and held a meeting with him on the issue.

“The defendant (AGF) did what he is statutorily empowered to do strictly within the confines of the law as the Chief Law Officer of the Federation and the President of the General Council of the Bar,” the counter affidavit read in part.

The Incorporated Trustees of the NBA had dragged the AGF before the court challenging the validity of the rules of professional conduct for legal practitioners (Amendment) Rules 2021 (S.I. No. 15 of 2020) enacted by the AGF.

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The suit, marked FHC/ABJ/CS/77/2022, was filed against Malami on January 24, 2022 by Sunday Ameh (SAN) on behalf of the NBA.

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