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Author Name: Oseni Oladimeji
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Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced, where ignorance prevails, and where any one class... (0) Comment

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Lawyers and the Nigerian Society
Author: Oseni Oladimeji | October 28, 2014

Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced, where ignorance prevails, and where any one class is made to feel that society is an organized conspiracy to oppress, rob and degrade them, neither persons nor property will be safe - Frederick Douglass The legal profession has always been held in high esteem but over the years it has been tainted with avaricious,sordid, and unwholesome activities-and this occurs all over the world with Nigeria not being an exeception,This might be largely due to the flexibility that its members have.To choose from either being a prosecuting or defence counsel under the noble assumption that everyone is presumed innocent until proven otherwise.In the process of practicing their profession however lawyers have sacrificed their conscience on the altar of Naira;after all a lawyers fame and fortunes are tangled to his reputation in winning cases. What expectation do we have as a nation ,if those who are charged with ensuring that justice and fairness is entrenched become accomplices,perpetrators and instruments of fraud,deceit and corruption.More so,when the celebrated ones amongst the clan are known for high-level sophistry and a total lack of ethical behavior? Surely,what this points to is the death of moral values.And this is compounded by an emergent compromised political class that has nurtured a culture of impunity and failed to establish the requisite moral high-ground to act as a beacon of hope for us to advance a transparent civilized society based on law and order.It is also very unfortunate that the miscreant behaviour of very senior lawyers in Nigeria who are supposed to tongue-lash,correct and serve as a point of reference to their surbodinate(s) have suddenly made them become the powerless basket case. It is worthy of note that the desire to make money at all cost can give rise to improper,dishonorable and illegal dealings and this is being manifested in the country today.Numerous allegations of wrong-doing is one very large sore that has failed to heal up.I am of the view that all professionals must be guided by a set of acceptable rules and a code of conduct that preserves the integrity of their profession.This article is needed at this critical point of our national life when the Nigerian people have virtually lost trust in government and the suspect political class;legislative arm of government is fast becoming an ineffectual appendage for checking abuse of power by the 'almighty' executive arm of Government thus gradually failing in its responsibility of being the peoples representative. Reported media revelations of unwholesome activities ranging from questionable judgements-in collusion with judges to conflicts of interest and corruption are fast becoming a dent to the once sacred image of our learned fellows. While I must commend the Nigeria Bar Association for doing its bit to make the legal profession what it is supposed to be-I must point out that it is time to bring to its knees the 'monster' that is making mockery of the legal profession and ultimately bringing it to disrepute. Article by Oseni Oladimeji O-a social critic, human rights activist and above all a lover of a free Nigerian Society!

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