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NBA writes Malami, seeks amendment to ‘controversial amendment’

The Nigerian Bar Association  says the recent amendment to the rules of professional conduct for legal practitioners 2007 has brought ridicule to the association.

The RPC sets out the professional duties of lawyers when dealing with clients, courts and their colleagues.

The Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, in an amendment to the RPC earlier in September, had eliminated the use of NBA stamp and seal on court processes.

Under the new provision, the use of the stamps is no longer necessary, giving room for non-lawyers to also submit court processes.

However, the NBA, in a letter to the AGF and signed by its president, Olumide Akpata, noted that the amendment to the RPC appeared to have been done without following due process, the Cable reported.

“Our position, Honourable Attorney-General, is that the Legal Practitioners Act (as amended) confers the power to issue or amend the RPC on the General Council of the bar (‘Bar Council’) albeit under your leadership. Consequently, the RPC or amendments thereto may only be enacted and issued after they have been duly approved at a properly convened meeting of the Bar Council,” the letter, which was dated September 15, 2020, read.

“I have been duly informed by NBA representatives on the Bar Council and other members of the Bar Council who have reached out to me, that to the best of their knowledge, no meeting of the Bar Council was convened to discuss any amendment to the RPC or to approve the Instrument. It therefore appears that the Instrument was enacted without proper authority.”

The NBA also raised concern over certain portions of the amended RPC, which it said would allow quacks take advantage of the profession.

Source: punchng.com