The 16th of July, 2012 was a historical day in the annals of NBA. I still remember that it was a cold, windy and rainy night. The venue was A-Class event center in Abuja. Over 1,000 delegates gathered in a hall for the Manifesto night. I sat quietly and listened with rapt attention as candidates for various national positions presented their agenda and profiles.
Then came the turn of the Presidential Candidates: Okey Wali SAN, Emeka Ngige SAN, and Blessing Ukiri, Esq. It was that night that most delegates made up their minds which of the 3 presidential candidates to vote for and they were right.
In his presentation, Okey Wali said he was a Senior Prefect in his Secondary school many years ago. Upon hearing that, the audience erupted in a thunderous applause because it meant he had leadership experience and antecedents. It meant he started honing his leadership skills very early. Okey Wali SAN won that election. No wonder he performed well in Office. His legacy: The NBA House, the current National Secretariat in the central area was started from foundation by Okey Wali SAN. He built it to the last floor before his tenure ended. He handed it over to next President who continued work on the building. Not many lawyers know this story. I heard the current President has continued work on other floors and the big auditorium. But Okey Wali started the building project from Foundation. It only shows visionary leadership borne out of experience. It shows leadership antecedents and experience matter.
With regard to the 2018 NBA election, of all the 3 presidential candidates, only Paul Usoro SAN has leadership antecedents and experience. In his Student years in University of Ife, Paul Usoro was elected the President of Law Students Association. He made a great President of law students from available statistics.
That is why I stand with Paul Usoro for NBA President because he would use his experience to put you first.
As lawyers prepare to vote, be guided by a candidate with leadership antecedents, experience and merit NOT primordial sentiment and emotions.
Benjamin Chukwuma, Esq.