Permit me to steer the waters of thought once again in this analysis of the usefulness of various Law weeks being organised by our NBA branches nationwide.
As a former branch chairman myself, I know why some members like the idea of a law week….I say some because in my 20+ years experience in core NBA politics, less than 20% of lawyers participate in these various Law Weeks.
Every year, over 70 out of 125 NBA Branches will host a law week, that same year, SLP, SBL and SPIDEL will host a conference, then comes the big one…the NBA national Conference. If one would score NBA, it would get the highest score in planning conferences.
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The JUSUN strike has gone on for 2 months and NBA is still very active in organizing conferences and Law Weeks. Where is the money coming from to do this? Well, I can tell you for free that the Governors are the biggest benefactors which raises concerns about NBA’s moral stance on many issues.
Another issue to consider is the content of these Law Weeks…..do they amount to anything?…has NBA followed up on any of it’s position which came out of a discussion had during a law week or national conference?…these are pertinent questions in light of the general state of the nation and especially the current predicament within the Judiciary.
So why do we organize these law weeks, what are its contents, it’s outcomes and generally it’s relevance to impacting the society and the nation at large.
Let me make a suggestion based on my experience…
- A law week must first focus on educating, mobilizing and empowering members of the community.
- Advocate for better laws and informing the community around them about their rights and obligations as citizens
- Render free legal services to members of the community and impacting their lives
- Encourage collaboration with Government Institutions and the private sectors for the benefit of the citizens
A law week that seeks to achieve the above would not require much effort or funding to organize. Which begs the question why NBA Branches spend so much on law weeks….the simple answer is that the budgets are spent on minor things such as renting big halls that end up half full, food, drinks, fanfare and finally an elaborate bar dinner. We simply major on the minors.
If NBA is to be taken seriously, each Branch must focus on the majors by focusing on the objects of NBA as contained in it’s constitution
Can we ever reform ourselves? Because of we can’t then we have no business telling others what to do