NBA Election 2020: Check Out the top Four potential Presidential Contenders

Less than twelve Months to the end of the tenure of the current President of the Nigerian Bar Association, Mr Paul Usoro SAN, the issue of his successor in office has been a prominent discussion among lawyers in Nigeria.

The Presidential Slot of the Association is expected to be zoned to the Western Zone of the Association in 2020 in accordance with the internal zoning arrangement of the Association. The Western Zone Consist of 6 Southwest States, Edo and Delta States.

To be qualified to contest for the leadership of the NBA next year, A lawyer must be 15 years and above at the Bar, come from the Western Zone, Be financially good member and be a member of the Association’s NEC for two years.

Here are 4 Prominent Members of the Association rumored to be nursing the ambition to replace Mr Usoro as Number one Officer of the Association.

 

OLUMIDE AKPATA – THE ANNOINTED

Powerful, Rich, a Lawyer of means, a big name within the Association and a very close friend of the NBA President, Paul Usoro SAN, Olu Akpata is rumored as Mr Usoro’s ‘annointed‘ choice of successor. Mr Akpata, a partner at Templars Law firm, hails from Edo State and is a very successful transactional lawyer of international repute.

Mr Akpata has served the NBA in various ways. He was is immediate past Chairman of the powerful Section on Business Law of the Association and part of the team that organized both 2015 and 2019 NBA National Annual Conferences.

His brief profile culled from Templars Law firm website states that he is admitted to practice law in Nigeria and has over two decades of experience in advising clients on various aspects of Nigerian Corporate and Commercial Law.

He has been recognized by IFLR 1000 as a leading Mergers & Acquisition lawyer in Nigeria and by Chambers and Partners “as having long experience in representing foreign clients” in his area of practice.
He regularly advises local and international corporations on the impact of Nigerian Law on their investments and/or operations in Nigeria particularly regarding: the establishment of local subsidiaries, corporate governance and compliance, mergers, acquisitions and corporate restructuring, labour and immigration, regulatory issues and tax.
Olu Akpata is often called upon to speak at local and international conferences and seminars and currently sits on the Council of the Nigeria Bar Association Section on Business Law. He is also the Vice-Chair (West-Africa) of the International Bar Association’s Africa Regional Forum.
The fact that he hails from the same state as ex-NBA president, Austin Alegeh SAN is what many believe will be a stumbling block to his very bright chance of replacing Usoro.
ADESINA OGUNLANA – THE SOCIAL CRUSADER
 Bold, Daring and a naturally inclined Social Justice Crusader, the immediate past Chairman of Ikeja Branch of the NBA is rumored to be aspiring to lead lawyers in 2020 as NBA President.
Mr Ogunlana became so popular in 2018 when he led Ikeja Branch to checkmate the lagos state government’s abusive policies and succeeded in getting an obnoxious Land Use Charge revoked by the Akinwumi Ambode led Lagos State government.
He was so popular then that many Nigerians mistake him for NBA President and many lawyers openly prayed that he get a chance to lead the NBA.
In a social media post sometime in 2018, he hinted that he may contest the number one post of the Association.
His brief profile states that he holds a BA in English from the University of Ife and an LLB from the Lagos State University. He was called to the Nigerian Bar in 1996 and has been in active legal practice since then. He is the Principal Partner of Winners Don’t Quit Chambers, a thriving law firm in Lagos and the publisher of the pro-integrity legal magazine, ‘The Squib’.
His major setback is that he is standing trial at the High Court by EFCC over some financial transaction during his reign as Ikeja NBA boss. Many lawyers also doubt his financial preparedness to vie in the very capital intensive NBA Presidential election.
Aare MUYIWA AKINBORO SAN – THE OMOLUABI
Only very few lawyers knows the NBA the way Aare Akinboro do. A powerful and versatile bar leader, Akinboro has served the NBA as Abuja Branch Secretary, Abuja Branch Chairman and as the General Secretary of the Association. He is seen as one of the godfathers of the NBA in Abuja.
Many Lawyers believe that Akinboro has been planning for a long time to be NBA President. He is seen as popular with Yoruba lawyers, under the aegis of Egbe Amofin.

His brief profile states that he graduated from Harvard Law School in 2014, the Nigerian Law School in 1991, Lagos State University in 1990,  Kwara State College of Technology, Ilorin in 986, Oyo State College of Arts and Science, Ile-Ife, Osun State in 1983, Iwo Grammar School, Iwo Osun State in 1981, Ibadan Christ Apostolic Grammar School, Ibadan in 1979, Children Home School Molete, Ibadan in 1975

He was elevated to Senior Advocate of Nigeria in 2015, a Notary Public, Member, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, UK (in view) and Associate, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, UK.

He founded and heads the thriving law firm of Akinboro and Co in Abuja.

 

DELE ADESINA SAN – THE VETERAN

Perhaps nobody is more prepared to lead the Nigerian Bar Association than Pastor Dele Adesina SAN. A bar veteran whose name has been a recurring decimal for NBA President since 2004. He was rumored as interested in the position in 2004 against Olanipekun SAN, stepped down for  Rotimi Akeredolu SAN in 2008, and lost to Austin Alegeh SAN in 2014. Adesina will be the most experienced aspirant if he declares for NBA President

A very committed man of the Bar; Dele Adesina SAN has been a member of the Ikeja branch, NBA, since 1986. And in 1998 he assumed the Chairmanship of the branch and held the office till 2000. He also virtually held all the relevant posts in the Ikeja NBA executive: secretary, publicity secretary, member of NBA disciplinary committee (1998-2002), as well as membership of the conference planning committee in 1998 and 2002-2007.

He was General Secretary, Nigerian Bar Association (2002 – 2004), Member, Governing Council, Legal Aid Council of Nigeria (2002 – 2004), Member, Distinguished Body of Benchers (Since 2006), Former Member, General Council of the Bar (2005), Life Member, National Executive Committee Nigerian Bar Association (Since 2002), Chairman, Nigerian Bar Association, Ikeja Branch (1998 – 2000), Secretary, Nigerian Bar Association, Ikeja Branch (1991 -1993), Member, National Political Reform Conference (2005), Member, Judiciary & Legal Reform Committee of the National Political Reform Conference (2005), Member, Board of Regent, Covenant University (Since 2003) and Member, Ekiti State Judiciary Service Commission, among other positions.

His Brief Profile culled from his law firm website stated that he is the Principal Solicitor in Chambers of Dele Adesina and Co. He graduated from University of Ife (now Obafemi Awolowo University) in 1981.
He was called to the Nigerian Bar as a Solicitor and Advocate of the Supreme Court of Nigeria in July, 1982.
Dele Adesina, was elevated to the Prestigious Rank of a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) – the highest recognition of Excellency in the Legal Profession by the Legal Practitioners Privileges Committee on the 30th of October, 2007 at the Supreme Court of Nigeria. He holds a Master of Laws Degree from the University of Lagos specializing in Comparative Company Law, (Commercial and Business Law) Comparative Constitutional Law and Comparative Criminal Law and Procedure.
Mr. Adesina, SAN has practiced law for 35 years and has run the law firm for about 25 years.

∗Please share your views on these top contenders with us in the comment section.

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