Plateau State Governor Simon Bako Lalong has challenged Nigerian legal professionals to be at the forefront of promoting the principles of justice and fairness which are the bedrock for a peaceful and stable society, even as Nigeria continues to confront its challenges.
The Governor was speaking at a reunion dinner of the Nigerian Law School Class of 1991 held in Abuja to mark 30 years call to the Nigerian Bar.
Lalong said “Most of us have risen up to the occasion and given account of our call to the Bar where we went on to build careers in the Bench, the Bar as well as in politics, business and many other professions. Ours has been a journey of hope resilience, excellence and commitment to the cause of nation-building”.
He asked them to use the opportunity of the 30 years celebrations to assess their achievements and critically evaluate their contributions to the growth of the legal profession and the nation at large.
“As lawyers, the society looks up to us for justice, human rights, peace, tolerance and equity. We cannot afford to let the people down or our noble calling. This is why we must collectively work towards instilling discipline within the profession as well as demonstrating excellence in our various areas of service. Let us pay special attention to the integrity and prestige of our profession by ensuring that we work within the code of conduct of our calling. We cannot fold our arms and see some few persons dragging the dignity of our profession to the mud. We have the best opportunity as classmates to tell one another the truth and offer valuable counsel when we see anyone going out of line”.
The Governor said this is the time for the class of 1991 to use their positions to promote the unity, peace and prosperity of Nigeria. He said they must rise up and fight every form of injustice, bigotry, division and hatred which unfortunately appears to be on the rise in the country.
Lalong said since assuming office as Governor of Plateau State, he has been doing his best to break all barriers of hate, division, ethno-religious bigotry and crises merchandizing which had eaten deep within the State and exacerbated by politicians.
“Even though such tendencies are not peculiar to Plateau State alone, I had to dismantle them in order to restore Plateau State to its original status as the Home of Peace and Tourism. Today, there is substantial peace and stability in the State because we ensured that most people got justice and fairness. Inclusivity has reduced to the barest minimum the tensions that arose out of injustice and exclusion. Projects are spread across the State irrespective of tribal, ethnic, political and other considerations. I have also completed many abandoned projects inherited from the previous administration even though of a different political party” he said.
Class leader of Law Class of 1991 Jibrin Okutepa SAN, said the event was organised in continuation of activities to unite members of the class who are making impact in various capacities both on the Bench, Bar, Politics, Business, Academia and other fields.
He said the class has proven to be very resilient and productive which is by the grace of God and the determination of members to make use of the knowledge given to them at the law school over 30 years ago.
Chairman of the 91 Anniversary celebrations Prof. Paul Ananaba SAN, said the Class has shown great potentials and contributed a lot to the development of Nigeria. He admonished the members to continue to do more for the nation by putting their heads together to promote the legal profession and also look out for one another.
Governor Lalong led other members of the class to make contributions for the upliftment of one of the classmate who was involved in an accident and has lost his legs.
Dr. Makut Simon Macham
Director of Press & Public Affairs to the Governor of Plateau State.
10th December 2021.