Paschal Emeka, Abuja.
Gwagwalada branch of the Nigeria Bar Association [NBA] has honoured some eminent jurists in the Federal Capital Territory [FCT] for their outstanding contributions to the growth of the judiciary, the dispensation of justice and the defence of democracy.
The investiture ceremony was part of the 10th anniversary celebration of the branch. It attracted prominent judges and other legal luminaries including the Chief Judge of the FCT, Justice Husseini Baba-Yusuf and the Grade Khadi of the FCT Sharia Court, Justice Ibrahim Rufai Imam, among others.
While justifying why the NBA embarked on the project, the Chairman of the Planning Committee, Alhaji Ibrahim G. Haruna said the contributions of the awardees have been ignored for too long and the association felt it was right to appreciate them for lifting the judiciary in the territory to great heights.
In a brief interview with our Correspondent, Barrister Haruna said those selected for the honour distinguished themselves well in the practice of the profession without staining their image or that of the judiciary.
Those honoured at the occasion were retired Justice Nwada Balami, Professor (Mrs.) Josephine A. A. Agbonika [SAN], Professor John M. Agbonika, members of the NBA with 30 years’ experience and past executive members of the association in Gwagwalada since 2012.
Briefing journalists after the ceremony, the Chairman of the NBA in Gwagwalada, Barrister Emmanuel Tayo Ogunjide defended the timing of the award event, stating that those honoured deserved to be recognised for their exceptional contributions to the legal profession.
“We give glory to God for the success of the programme. We decided that it is not about the time but about the success of the event and all those who were honoured deserved the recognition.
“We promised members that we would do things in extra-ordinary ways. What we did today is only the beginning of things to come from the new executive. We are not concerned about the amount of money realised, rather, we are happy with the calibre of people who graced the event,” Ogunjide said.
Speaking on behalf of other awardees Justice Nwada Balami, expressed gratitude that the NBA branch found them worthy to be honoured and stated that the award will spur the recipients to greater heights in the service of the judiciary and humanity in general.
“We are happy with the current executive of the NBA in Gwagwalada. They are progressive and I am impressed with their performance so far. In my capacity as the Grand Patron of the branch, I only have to encourage the members to be steadfast and dedicated in their performance,” Balami concluded.