Ekiti State Governor, Kayode Fayemi, at the weekend charged members of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) not to lose focus in the roles they are currently playing to deepen democracy in the country.
The governor gave the charge while receiving the leadership of the association led by its National President, Mr. Okey Wali (SAN), in his office to end the three-day National Executive Council (NEC) meeting of the association, which was held in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital.
According to the governor, the NBA had always been at the fore front for agitations for the growth of the nascent democracy, urging them not to relapse in view of the coming change in its leadership following the expiration of the tenure of the outgoing executive.
Fayemi who asserted that lawyers are needed to continue their noble roles in entrenching the rule of law as the country prepares for the 2015 general election, commended the Okey Wali-led executive for successfully “expanding the coast of the bar in the country.”
While highlighting the roles of the state chapter of the association in advancing the course of the people, the governor stated that the NBA had played a very crucial role in the sustenance of peace and order in the state since his emergence as governor in 2010.
He added that the state chapter of NBA had also contributed largely in the reform of administration of Justice in the state as well as other legal framework aimed at making the state a choice destination for investors.
Fayemi said: “I must commend the Bar here in the state for working with us to assure the people that the processes and principles of the legal framework aimed at advancing the course of democracy is in place. They believe in it, they support it and associate with it, even actively take part in it.
“There is hardly any committee we set up in the administration of justice that the NBA is not actively involved.
“I think all of us in the state owe the association and the legal profession in general a debt of gratitude because we wonâ€™t have had this largely peaceful tenure without them.
“This is a governor who loses cases in his own state court without any repercussion. We have had a robust relationship with the judiciary, the bar, and we will continue to respect the individual right of our citizens because they are citizens, not subjects.â€
Speaking earlier, the President of the Association, Wali, said the courtesy call on the governor was customary to the association after its NEC meeting as a mark of respect for the governor of the host state.
The NBA chieftain who had at the banquet held for members of the association commended Fayemi for transforming the state, also noted that the governor has given the state purposeful leadership in the last three years.
While lauding Fayemi for the support given to the state chapter of the association in hosting the NEC meeting, Wali said it proved that the governor is loved by the people of the state.