A Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Femi Falana, said on Sunday he would challenge the illegal amendment of the Rules of Professional Conduct for Legal Practitioners 2007 by the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN).
The AGF amended the RPC for legal practitioners through a gazette marked S.I N0.15 of 2020 and dated September 3, 2020.
He amended the RPC by deleting sections 9(2), 10, 11, 12, and 13 thereby removing the requirement for NBA stamp and seal on court processes and giving everyone – including non-lawyers – the right to submit court processes.
Falana, who reacted to the development in a statement, said he had sought further clarification and discovered that a former Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Chief Bayo Ojo (SAN) did not actually take a unilateral decision while amending the RPC in 2007 but consulted the general council on the matter.
He said: “My position on the 2007 RPC was anchored on the preamble wherein it is stated: ‘In the exercise of power conferred on me by section 12(4) of the Legal Practitioners Act 1990, as amended, and all other powers enabling me in that behalf, I, Bayo Ojo, Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice/Chairman General Council of the Bar hereby Make the following Rules.’
“However, I have read the clarifications credited to Prof. Ernest Ojukwu (SAN) and Lawal Rabal (SAN) to the effect that the 2007 RPC was properly made by the GCB. I have also spoken to both of them on phone for confirmation of their positions. I verily believe them in toto.
“Therefore, notwithstanding my opposition to the Stamp and Seal on ideological grounds I wish to reiterate my position that the 2020 RPC was illegally made by the AGF, Mr. Abubakar Malami (SAN). To that extent, I will take appropriate steps to fight this latest act of unpardonable impunity emanating from the office of the AGF.”
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