Inaugural Speech of NBA Lagos Branch Chairman Lateef Omoyemi Akangbe

29th July, 2019.


Chairman of NBA Lagos Branch Lateef Omoyemi Akangbe with other members of the newly inaugurated Executive Committee

1. I thank God Almighty for making today a reality.

2. I have known few greater honours, than the oppourtunity to steer the ship of this premier branch.
Therefore, on behalf of the newly elected ExCo and myself, i want to thank every member of the branch for entrusting us with the mandate to lead and direct the affairs of our branch for the next 2 years.

3. We acknowledge the achievements of Mr Chukwuka Ikwazom led exco, we are proud of their achievements, they have laid the foundation for us to now begin to build castles on. I cannot but wish each and everyone of them well in all their future endeavours. I must also not forget to mention the members of the committes, both standing and ad hoc, set up by the previous administration. We appreciate your selfless effort and the sacrifice you made to achieve all the wonderful things you achieved in your time.

4. On the 28th of June, 2019 the branch spoke via an electoral process that was free, fair, transparent, seamless and credible. We must salute the previous administration for that feat and the members of the electoral committee for their forthrightness and independence, my mind tells me that history of this branch will forever be kind to them.

5. Today marks the first day of our tenure in office, accordingly, we begin to write our history today.

6. There can be no gainsaying that your expectations on us are very high, we are mindful of those expectations and i have no doubt in my mind that with your cooperation and support, we will surpass those expectations.

7. In my manifesto, i promised you that the future ahead is bright and wonderful. Today, that future is now here. We remain resolute in our promise of building platforms for prosperity and upliftment. However, just like every human endeavours, we may encounter setbacks at the beginning and false starts but i ask for your cooperation and understanding in that period, i beg that you be kind to us, even in your constructive criticism, please be fair and kind to us.

8. Our September meeting will be a critical and a must attend for everyone, not only because it will be the first under our regime but it sets the tone for our tenure and we will amongst other things, deal with the following matters;

A.Members of new standing committees will be presented to the house for ratification;

B.The 2 initiatives promised within the first 100 days in office will be presented to the house. One being a collaboration between the branch and the CiArb to train our members in the field of ADR and have them certified as skilled in that space, which Mr Tunde Busari(SAN), the chair of that Institute and i have almost concluded and i wish to recognise his presence here and humbly ask that we treat him to an applause. In addition to that, at that meeting, we will give an indication on a Law firm mentorship intiatives between the branch and the SBL, would wish to recognise the chair of that section, in the person of Mr Seni Adio (SAN) and would be grateful if we could applaud him. The third being on the health insurance. In line with our campaign promise, we expect to have 2 of the leading health care providers attend the meeting to make a pitch to the house, with a view to setting up a platform for our members to get on. These amongst others will be the beginning of the journey into the realisation of our campaign promises.

9. Our manifesto will be our guide and believe we will be judged on it. The other initiatives therein, such as the completion of bar center in our tenure, a member centric secretariat, re-introduction of the Lagos Bar Journal, creation of a Career Development Center an updated database of our members will all be taken seriously. In due course, i will set up an ad hoc manifesto committee and charge them with the responsibility of ticking the boxes in our manifesto and periodically review same.

10. Before i resume my seat, i want to thank my family for their tolerance and the unsung heros of my political campaign, these are the members of the project brave heart 1, for their bravery and their ability to defy the apathy of the majority of their peers.

11. I also thank all the members of the project brave heart, you are indeed a formidable team. Having said that, i passionately appeal to those who did not vote for me, please be asssured that i may not have won your votes, not because of poor judgement but it was because i did not convince you enough. I want to be your chairman and please see me approachable and accessible at all times.

12. I also thank my co contestants, i acknowledge Mrs Animashaun and her sportsmanship, was one of the first set of people to embrace me, upon the declaration of the result at the foyer.

13. The moment i was declared the winner of the election, I received a gracious call from Mr Adebola Lema. I acknowledge the fact that he fought long and hard, and the quality of the fight he gave is evident in the 40% votes he amassed.

14. I congratulate the 2 of you for what you have achieved in life and i look forward to working with them as we go along.

15. I would not be standing here today, without the unyielding support of my mentors, the people that taught me everything i know about the law today. That is Messrs Sofunde, Ogundipe and Belgore, 2 of whom are here today and i ask Messrs Sofunde and Belgore SANs. I acknowledge their presence and humbly ask that you join me in applauding them. I also recognise the support and love shown to me in my career by Messrs Wale Akoni, Ade Adedeji Tola Oshobi and Olu Akpata, amongst others.

16. Above all, i want to thank the people that this victory truly belong to and this you (members of our branch) without your votes, i will not emerge, as even i would admit that at the start of this journey, i was not the likeliest candidate to emerge, but through your support i became victorious. You are truly appreciated.

17. I close, by re-assuring you that i will remain your servant, i will be honest with you and i will listen to you, most especially when we disagree.

Thank you very much.

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