Crisis has hit the Nigerian Bar Association as the Jigawa, Bauchi and Yobe States chapters among others have threatened to boycott the 2020 Annual General Conference of the body over the dis-invitation of the Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-rufai, as Guest Speaker.
El-Rufai’s invitation to speak at the conference was withdrawn over a petition against him by the National Executive Committee of the NBA.
However, this has not gone down well with some state chapters of the Association.
A member of NBA NEC, Lawal Garba, accused the President of the NBA, Paul Usoro (SAN), of having pre-planned the withdrawal of El-Rufai’s invitation, adding that it was not put to vote.
Garba, who made his views known on his Twitter handle, said: “I’m Lawal Hudu Garba, NEC Rep, Birnin Kebbi Branch, I was part of the meeting and I raised my hand severally but the president didn’t recognize me.
“It’s a pre-planned NEC meeting.
“It seemed as he had planted persons to execute the plan.
“He recognized only members from Benue.
“Plateau and those from southern part of this country.
“Chairman Sokoto Branch and one other person spoke against de-invitation of El-Rufa’i.
“Moreover, the TCCP chair, Ajayi SAN vehemently spoke against withdrawal of the invitation only to be overruled by the president.
“The president didn’t call for a counter motion and hence no votes were cast for or against the motion for withdrawal of invitation.
“When I said no votes cast, I mean not even a voice votes.
“Procedurally, the resolution of the NEC is defective.”
The Chairman of the Jigawa State chapter of the Association, Garba Abubakar, also opposed the move in a statement.
Abubakar, in a statement on Friday, called on the national leadership of the association to reverse the decision or face boycott by the chapter.
The Bauchi State chapter was also equivocal in its opposition to the withdrawal of El-Rufai’s invitation.
In a statement by its Chairman and Secretary, Abubakar Abdulhamid-Bununu and Shamsudeen Magani respectively, the chapter described the NBA’s decision as unpopular, “which affects the hard-earned image and integrity of the Nigerian Bar Association as an impartial unpire”.
It added: “Furthermore, failure to rescind its decision, the leadership of our noble branch has resolved unanimously an unequivocally to boycott the forthcoming NBA conference scheduled for this 2020.
The Yobe State chapter of the NBA has also threatened to withdraw from the Conference.
Some other members of the NBA and Nigerians who are not lawyer have also kicked against the withdrawal of El-Rufai’s invitation.
They equally requested for the withdrawal of the invitation to the conference extended to former President Olusegun Obasanjo and the Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike.