The announcement this morning of the suspension of the National Secretary of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Mrs. Joyce Odua, would appear to be the climax of the recent squabble going on within the outgoing National Executives’ circle. One is actually tempted to ask, “what really is the issue?
Dear NBA National Executives, what you have told us is that you want to amend the constitution and you were not able to issue the statutory notices within the stipulated time. Under the same breath, you also said there is no solution for this lapse. Some other quarters are of the opinion that we are lawyers, we can always regularize any irregular position, therefore, there is solution.
Our understanding now is that, this issue as simple as it sounds cannot be resolved by your good gentle selves. Because of this simple issue, you are bringing your legs outside. You are suspending your GS and you are now analyzing your lines of authority, all for this very reason? Or is there something you are not telling us? Should we assume that we are left to grapple with half of the truth? It would really make sense if any of you could give us a hint as to the things you are not telling us. This will help us to really appreciate the entire hullabaloo. For now, we are just wondering.
It is actually a bit ridiculous to begin to imagine. We were on our own, minding our business, and you decide to amend the constitution to, among other things; increase the percentage of the money due to branches, and ring fence some money so that it does not get dissipated. You obtained the necessary approval from the highest body and what was left is for you to tidy your house and make these amendments happen. Then all of sudden we began to hear that you were all out of time within which to issue notices. Then, Mr. President says it does not matter if a notice issued had “small” defect and madam Secretary says there is nothing like “small” defect. Defect is DEFECT and I am not party to it! Should this be enough to bring this tenure that many have adjudged the best after the likes of legendary Aka Bashorun to a ridiculous end? I do not think so.
But then, when overzealousness meets unreasonableness, the result is usually a big storm inside a tea cup? Ki lagbe? Ki le ju? How do you use two years to build a castle and decide by yourself, unprovoked, to destroy it one week to its commissioning? Who does that?
Does madam GS have a right to insist on following the rules to the letter? Does Mr. President have a right to insist that we can find a way around this issue somehow? These two questions to my mind are both correct. What has now happened is that someone is so unreasonable to see reasons and someone is overzealous to understand that being unreasonable is unreasonable! (I am actually also confused).
My own verdict which may not help in this whole quagmire is, Madam GS, you know that there is a higher authority that can rule on these whole out of time something and that higher authority has not said you should leave their presence enh? You too, why did you not take your military to the higher authority? If you did, will anybody now match you out of their office or remove the staff that are working with you? And you too Mr. President, why did you remove all the staff and now ordered your 2ic out of your office? That one is not nice now? And all the other signatories to this infamous resolution that will now pour sand sand inside your fantastic garri, why did you too not try to meet your brethren in the other room? All of you are at fault! All ten of you!
In the final analysis, my humble take is that we do not need this crisis that these outgoing humans are trying to create for us. Because come to think of it, why did you not start this fight early enough to be able to finish it? Why are you starting what you cannot finish?
We (me and my fellow spectators) we wish to appeal that nothing untoward must happen to our Conference and our AGM. You all know the important national issue that we are going to discuss in this year’s Conference. And for the very last time, nothing must happen to this peace that we have enjoyed in the past many years in the National NBA. Please we beg that you do not use your own to spoil our own.
PS: Speaking seriously, it is rather sad that this tenure would end on this note. This should be a personal pain and disappointment for all the Executives.
May posterity be kind to us all!