SAN tasks politicians on justice, good governance
A senior lawyer and former General Secretary, Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Mr. Dele Adesina (SAN), has warned that justice and progress may continue to elude Nigeria until its politicians get their priorities about governance right.
“In my humble opinion, until the politicians, who rule over us, get their priorities right, nothing, absolutely, nothing will be right, including our justice system and so many existential life issues in Nigeria, such as the economy and security,” he said.
Adesina, a life member of the Body of Benchers (BoB), Nigeria’s legal system apex body, gave this warning at the yearly lecture of the Faculty of Law, Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago Iwoye, Ogun State on March 23, 2023.
The lecture was titled: “Law, Politics, and Challenges of Prosecuting Economic and Financial Crimes in Nigeria.” In his 56-page lecture, Adesina said: “For democracy to endure, it must guarantee justice to all manner of people according to law.
“Nigeria system as currently constituted will continue to deny justice to litigants of both civil and criminal cases, and even the society as long as the country fails to deal with the problems facing the judiciary.
“Investment in the judiciary is an investment in justice. Investment in justice is an investment in democracy, and I submit that investment in democracy is an investment in the development of the people.”
The senior lawyer lamented the arrogance of politicians, who, he claimed, have run the country aground, increasing the level of poverty of the people, while they amass communal wealth that belongs to the people.
“One thing that baffles me is the way we address our problems. We all know our problems, as a nation and I dare say that we know the solutions to these problems. However, we always technically avoid the problems believing that they will solve themselves,” he said.
One such problem, according to the erudite lawyer, is the penchant of politicians, particularly, at the state levels, who enjoy embarking on white elephant projects to the detriment of the welfare and development of their people.
These projects, he said, have made many governors richer than the states they govern.
“With the exception of a very negligible few, this country has had the misfortune of producing, particularly at the state level, leaders who have consistently and continually placed the nation at their service rather than placing themselves at the service of the nation,” he said.
Among dignitaries that attended the lecture are: the Alara of Aramoko Ekiti, Oba Olu Adeyemi; Vice Chancellor, Prof. Ayodeji Agboola; the University Registrar, Mr. Femi Ogunwomoju; Dean Faculty of Law, Dr. Gbade Akinrimade; former Vice President, NBA, Mr. Adekunle Ojo (SAN) and Mr. Gbenga Ogunba, former chairman, Ijebu-Ode NBA.
Others were chairman, Ikeja NBA, Mr. Seyi Olawumi; former chairmen, Ikeja NBA, Mr. Dave Ajetomobi, and Adebamigbe Omole; Chief Adebayo Ayodele, former Chairman, Abeokuta NBA; Publisher, Gavel International, Mustapha Ogunsakin, and Otunba Olumide Olaiya.