What an Olumide Akpata win means for NBA
By John Eche
The likely emergence Thursday of Mr. Olumide Akpata as the duly elected President of the Nigerian Bar Association, NBA is coming with a number of implications, analysts are saying.
From the exit polls outcome monitored by The Difference Newspaper early Thursday evening, Akpata, who led other contenders even when half of the votes had not been cast and counted is set to be sworn in as the next President of the association as he had taken a quite early lead in the contest, ahead of his closest rivals.
Among other factors, Olumide Akpata may finally secure victory on a number of variables including the fact that his emergence may now expand the democratic space within the association as it is what one commentator has described as a ‘departure from old order of making NBA Presidency an exclusive right of SANs.’
A second statement made by his emergence is generational and demographic as being young himself, and driving a fiercely pro-young campaign, he had succeeded to a large measure in seriously appealing to the conscience of Young Lawyers who arguably make up the largest chunk of the NBA voting bloc.
A third strength of his campaign is that it was quite strong on social media and indeed, he was able to engage a lot of the right people on social media, and consequently garner a lot of voting capital.
And extrapolating from this, should the larger Nigerian space be taking notice? Are there some young political players out there that want to build on this template? Should we be expecting our Macron moment going forward?
And given the challenges that had greeted the emergence and indeed about all of the tenure of outgoing President, Usoro Usoro, here’s hoping that there would not be too much distracting litigation ahead on the path of the new President and that he gets to work and delivers upon the promise of his campaign and the broader national clamour for a more activist bar.
And talking about protests and litigation, one had already come in with Dele Adesina, SAN calling on the supervising Electoral Commission to immediately discontinue the rest of the polling and counting process.
Partner and Head of the Corporate and Commercial Practice Group at Templars, Akpata who was born in 1972 was formally head of the Business Law Section of the NBA. He ran around the slogan #MakingtheBarWorkforAll.
Mr. Olumide Akpata, Likely in-coming President, NBA