Olumide Akpata’s co-contestant Babatunde Ajibade congratulates him

Babatunde Ajibade

A presidential contestant in the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) elections Babatunde Ajibade has congratulated Olumide Akpata on emerging as the 30th president of the association.

Mr Ajibade said in a statement he signed on Friday that he was proud of the level of debate and quality of ideas that were brought forth in the build-up to the elections.

He, however, noted that the processes leading up to and during the election did not come without controversy.

“It is unfortunate that the process leading up to and during the election itself have, once again, not been devoid of controversy. It is my fervent hope that we will get over these repeated challenges with conducting objectively free and fair elections into the leadership positions in the association.

“I remain resolute in my belief that we cannot succeed in addressing the challenges confronting our profession unless we unite and I urge the incoming President and his executive to take deliberate and proactive steps to unite the Bar,” Ajibade said.

The lawyer thanked his supporters, saying that although they did not achieve the desired goal, the experience was rewarding and fulfilling.

“Though we did not get the result we wanted, the experience has been rewarding and fulfilling. I have met and established lasting bonds of friendship with colleagues from different parts of our great country Nigeria who share my values and aspirations for a better, stronger and united legal profession,” he said.

Another presidential contestant Dele Adesina had earlier in the day called for the cancellation of the exercise, describing it as “a sham”.

Mr Adesina said in a petition to the NBA Electoral Committee chairman Taiwo Taiwo that the process was marred by over-voting, disenfranchisement of some eligible voters and non-compliance with the provisions of the NBA Constitution.