Southwest Lawyers Reject Akpata’s Election As Next NBA President

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Mr Olumide Akpata

…Says 4,000 Ghost Voters Participated In Poll

‌The South-West Lawyers’ Forum, popularly known as Egbe Amofin, has rejected the result of last week national election of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) which produced Mr Olumide Akpata as the next bar President.

Egbe Amofin, in a communiqué dated August 1, 2020, jointly signed by Chairman of its Steering Committee, Chief Niyi Akintola (SAN), and Secretary, Dr Oluwole Akintayo, alleged manipulation of the election in favour of Akpata.

The group claimed that 4,000 ‘ghost voters’ were smuggled into the voters’ register.

The Egbe Amofin also alleged the “creation of an International Diaspora Branch of the NBA for voting – a phenomenon that is strange and unknown to the NBA constitution.”

Mr Dele Adesina (SAN), who was the consensus presidential candidate of the Egbe Amofin, came third in the election, which was won by Akpata.

Another Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Dr Babatunde Ajibade, who disagreed with Egbe Amofin on the adoption of Adesina as consensus presidential candidate of the South-West lawyers, came second in the election.

Already, Ajibade has congratulated Akpata on his victory.

In its communiqué, which was made available on Tuesday, the Egbe Amofin said the return of Akpata as the winner of the election by the Electoral Committee of the NBA was unlawful and violated the NBA constitution, given the alleged irregularities.

The Egbe Amofin said, “Over 4000 ‘voters’ appeared on the emergency voters’ list used for the election and these ghost voters have no identifiable branches or are not linked or traceable to any branch.”

The Egbe Amofin added that as of the time the electronic election ended at 11pm last Thursday, not less than 13,000 of the 29,636 lawyers accredited had not voted.

It said with the alleged huge unlawful disenfranchisement of voters, even the Independent National Electoral Committee, which was randomly criticised, would not have declared any candidate winner the way the ECNBA did.

This is the first time in over 30 years that a member of the outer bar (non-Senior Advocate) will emerge as NBA President, as Akpata defeated two Senior Advocates (members of inner bar) in the election.

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