THE immediate past Chairman of Nigeria Bar Association (NBA), Asaba branch, Mr Freddie Eruli-Ede, has said, Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State, created the enabling environment for his administration to succeed.
Eruli-Ede in an interview with newsmen in Asaba, also, commended members of the association for their support which ensured a successful tenure in office.
According to him, his Exco received an overwhelming support from members of the NBA and relevant stakeholders which made his administration smooth.
He stated that a lot of successes where recorded during his tenure which included the construction of a multi-million naira Bar Centre, catering of welfare of members, among others.
“During my tenure, Governor Okowa in his magnanimity ensured that members of the branch got important appointments, and they include, amongst others, Peter A. Mrakpor, Esq., who was appointed Attorney and Commissioner for Justice Delta State; A.O. Odum, Esq. who was appointed Special Adviser to the Governor on Legal Matters.
“Also, Princess Pat Ajudua was elected into the Delta State House of Assembly and later appointed Chief Whip of the House of Assembly; Stella Mejulu, Esq. who was elected FIDA Chairperson in Delta State; Habeeb Lawal, Esq., who was elected Assistant Publicity Secretary of the Nigerian Bar Association; the Vice Chairman of the Branch, Chief (Sir) Enemhinye Ehigiator who was also, honoured with the chieftaincy title of “Efua of Okalo Kingdom” in Edo State. I, once again, congratulate them and wish them well in their respective offices and positions.
“The relationship between the Bench and the Bar has been good and cordial and I most humbly thank Justice Marshal Umukoro, Chief Judge of Delta State, for this state of affairs; and, I also thank Hon. Justice Stella Ogene (Mrs), President Customary Court of Appeal, for supporting the Branch; Your leadership roles are exemplary and worthy of commendation.
“We succeeded in remodeling and completing the Bar Centre; the building of the Bar Centre was commenced by our revered learned Silk, Chike Onyemenam, SAN during his tenure as Branch Chairman between 2002 – 2004 and I must profusely commend him for commencing this great project.
“I will also thank all the past chairmen and all members of the branch who have played significant roles in the construction of the edifice; to Hon. Justice R.P.I. Bozimo (Mrs) who granted the land to the branch while she was serving as the Chief Judge of Delta State, I say a big thank you.
“My greatest thanks goes to Hon. (Prince) Ned Nwoko who graciously gave a whooping and unprecedented sum of N30,000,000.00 (Thirty Million Naira) to the Branch for the remodeling and completion of the Bar Centre.
“During the life of the Executive some members were elevated to the Bench, and they include Hon. Justice O.F. Enenmoh, who was appointed a Judge of the High Court and Champion Umukoro, Esq. who was appointed a Judge of the Revenue Court.
“At the outbreak of COVID-19 in Nigeria and the subsequent lockdown imposed by the Delta State Government, to reduce the harsh effect of the lockdown on some of our Members, the Executive set up the Palliative/Relief Committee; the Committee had a mandate to source for funds and distribute relief materials/palliatives to young and needy Members.
“The Committee raised the sum of N1,830,000.00 (One Million Eight Hundred and Thirty Thousand Naira) and the Executive gave an additional sum of N250,000.00 (Two Hundred & Fifty Thousand Naira). From the N2,080,000.00 (Two Million & Eighty Thousand Naira), the Committee disbursed the sum of N10,000.00 (Ten Thousand Naira) per person to majority of the young and needy members of the Branch.
“A 3-Member Caretaker Committee made up of A.K. Nmah, Esq., O.W. Chibuogwu, Esq. and H.C. Oseyenim, Esq. has already been appointed by the National Executive of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) to administer the Branch for 3 months and conduct an elections.
“While I most profusely apologize for any lapses, shortcomings, errors or omissions committed or exhibited by me or any member of the Executive or Branch Committee in the discharge or our duties, I appeal to all our members and relevant stakeholders to render the same level of cooperation and assistance to the incoming executive to enable them succeed.”