To the glory of God Almighty, I am pleased to announce the release and return of Mr Okey Wali, SAN to his family. I personally spoke with him, and he is in good spirits. The 26th President of the NBA was kidnapped and held for 14 days following a violent attack on his convoy along East– West Road, in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of Rivers State on 17 April 2023.
On behalf of the members of the Nigerian Legal Profession I thank all well-wishers who stood by the Bar and the family of Mr. Okey Wali, SAN, in thoughts, prayers and deeds, throughout this horrific ordeal.
I appreciate the interventions of the Governor of Rivers State, His Excellency, Nyesom Wike; the Inspector General of Police; the Director General of the Department of State Services; the Commissioner of Police and the State Director of Service, Rivers State; together with all their officers and men, who worked tirelessly since the ugly incident took place. I am grateful to all members of both the Bench and Bar, for the display of camaraderie during this period of trial. The support, prayers and goodwill have greatly helped the efforts deployed towards the safe release of our brother and leader. The leadership and members of the Bar in Rivers State have been exceptionally wonderful. We thank God Almighty for answering our prayers and granting us the safe return of Mr Okey Wali, SAN.
We reiterate our call on the Federal Government to live up to its constitutional responsibility of protecting the lives and properties of all Nigerians in all its ramification. Every life is valuable and must be treated with honour and dignity. There must be a deliberate and appropriate investment in the improvement of the welfare of all security agencies particularly the Police, and adequately equipping them to function effectively and efficiently. Otherwise, it will be hypocritical, if not fraudulent, to expect any meaningful result from the Nigerian Police in its constitutional duty of protecting the lives and properties of Nigerians. One can only give from the abundance of what he/she has.
As our past President recovers from the experience of this ordeal, I pray that God will comfort the families of those who were killed in the incident and grant them eternal rest. I also pray for the quick recovery of the police officers who suffered gunshot injuries from the incident.
I thank you all.
Yakubu Chonoko Maikyau, OON, SAN
STATEMENT OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE NIGERIAN BAR ASSOCIATION, MR YAKUBU CHONOKO MAIKYAU, OON, SAN, ON THE ABDUCTION OF MR. OKEY WALI, SAN