NBA opposes agreement to let UK lawyers practise in Nigeria, threatens legal action

Wednesday, February 14, 2024 
-The Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) has reacted to the trade deal between Nigeria and the United Kingdom which allows UK lawyers to practise in Nigeria.

 In a statement signed by NBA President, Mr. Yakubu Maikyau SAN, he berated the Federal Government for signing the deal without consultation with the NBA.

Maikyau said: “It is indeed unfortunate that this tragic reminder of our colonial past is being gleefully celebrated at the highest level of the Government of Nigeria. What is more disheartening is that a decision of this magnitude that adversely affects the well-being and livelihood of millions of Nigerians could be taken without consultation, especially with the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA).”

He continued: “It is truly tragic that while the government of the UK is seeking opportunities for its own lawyers beyond its constrained environment, the government of Nigeria is attempting to deprive Nigerian lawyers and their millions of dependants of a means of livelihood. To embark on such a venture without recourse to the NBA is the height of insensitivity to the plight of the legal profession in Nigeria, which is totally unacceptable.”

He warned that the NBA would take all necessary measures to express its rejection of the trade deal, adding: “As a starting point, I have convened a meeting of senior lawyers today with a view to devising an appropriate litigation strategy.

“We intend to fully challenge the legality of this agreement all the way to the Supreme Court if necessary. This is without prejudice to other intervention measures that may be necessary to express our rejection of this agreement. I want to use this opportunity to call on all members of the NBA to brace up for the struggle ahead. Under my leadership, the NBA will not allow any incursion into our legal space.”

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