Ikorodu Crisis: “We are all Lawyers” “Under what law did NBA GS act?” – NBA Chairman Bayo Akinlade Responds to directive to halt election

The Chairman of Nigerian Bar Association, NBA, Ikorodu Branch, Mr Bayo Akinlade has responded to the directive of the NBA General Secretary, Jonathan Taidi, for the branch to halt a bye-election into the office of the vice chairman of the branch in reaction to a petition sent to the National body by a removed Vice Chairman of the Branch.

According to the reaction sent to www.barristerng.com, the Ikorodu NBA boss gave a timeline of event that warranted the bye-election into the office of the vice chairman. The chairman further questioned the power of the NBA GS to direct him to overrule branch decisions.

Below is the full statement of Ikorodu Branch NBA Boss, Bayo Akinlade

 

STATEMENT OF THE CHAIRMAN OF NBA IKORODU BRANCH ON THE ELECTIONS FOR THE POSITION OF VICE CHAIRMAN OF NBA IKORODU BRANCH

_Chronology of Events_
2018
1. As elections were about to commence for the 2nd time within a few weeks after the 1st one, Madam GC was called aside by the National Electoral committee and given a letter disqualifying her [Question: Why did they clear her for elections and then disqualify her on the day of elections

2. Madam GC for the sake of peace did not contest it and Mr. O was returned unopposed as VC

3. Mr. O did not wait for the exco meeting we called that day and since August 2018 has not attended one single exco meeting

4. Madam GC in complying with the Bylaws wrote a petition to the branch asking for a reversal of the decision of the electoral committee that was single handedly put together by the then GS regarding the position of the VC

5. The petition of madam GC was brought to the floor of the house where it was deliberated and put to a vote. Only 2 people opposed the petition while over 20 members voted to have the 2 candidates contest fairly [Mr. O was in that meeting]

6. Mr. O did not petition the branch and required by the bylaws but went straight to the national body who quickly wrote to halt elections. In good faith we obliged

7. The 2nd Vice president visited on several occasions and submitted her report which was published in the December NEC report.

8. The report in summary recommended that an election be held between the 2 contestant and any other interested contender BUT the report also referenced that her report was awaiting the PRESIDENT’S INPUTS [the report was submitted to the president in October 2018 but up until now, the president has not given any inputs]….we wonder

*2019*
9. The NEC report of December 2018 was tabled for discussion at the January meeting and the recommendation of the 2nd Vice president for the conduct of fresh elections was adopted.

10. At the February meeting of the branch it’s was unanimously agreed that an election will take place in March

11. The agenda for March was prepared with the nominations and appointment of the election committee clearly stated as an item. This was communicated to the 2nd Vice president and reports where also sent to her on a regular basis

12. At the March meeting the electoral body was set up and given 2 weeks to conclude elections. Mr. O did not raise any objections and no one said anything. The 2nd Vice president was also informed.

13. On Thursday the day before the planned election I received a Whatsapp message asking me to halt elections and I subsequently received a copy of a petition written by Mr. O addressed to the GS and sent by email just 2 days before. *Mr. O for more that 10 days did not petition the branch as required by the bylaws but went straight to the national just 2 days before the planned elections*……one wonders what is really going on

14. I notify the GS that under our bylaws, election committees are independent and I do not have enough time to call an EGM neither can I interfere in the process BUT I managed to call for an executive council meeting later that evening and the meeting advised that I do not possess the powers to halt elections and that only members in a general meeting can extend the dates.

*QUESTIONS*
1. Why did the GS not instruct the petitioner to follow due process in the complaint process

2. Why did the GS act so quickly to a petition which came just 2 days before the planned election

3. Under what constitutional powers did the GS ACT

4. HOW CAN I DISOBEY A DIRECTIVE I AM YET TO RECEIVE but they want me to act upon a Whatsapp message?

5. Does a Branch chairman have the powers under the bylaws to change the dates of an election agreed to by members in a general meeting and announced by the EC

6. Can the GS instruct a Chairman of a branch to halt elections 24 hours before the said elections is to hold?

*WE ARE ALL LAWYERS*

I am sure the national body has bigger issues to resolve than the position of the Vice Chairmanship of a branch with barely 300 members… *or is there something else to it?*

It remains to be seen

Bayo Akinlade Esq

 

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