A human right lawyer and former NBA Vice President, Barr. Monday Ubani has applauded the doggedness of the late legal icon, Gani Fawehinmi at using law as an instrument of social change.

He made this commendation on Wednesday while delivering a welcome address at the 16th Gani Fawehinmi annual lecture which took place in Lagos.

While stating that the late Fawehinmi’s legacy remain a treasure to the legal community now and in the future, Barr. Ubani emphasized that no lawyer whether dead or alive has equal achievement with the late human right lawyer.

Siting the recent pressure mounted on the DSS to obey the court order that granted Omoyele Sowore bail, Ubani stated that the human rights community in Nigeria is awake at ensuring the protection of Nigeria’s democracy.

He also thanked the wife of late Gani, Mrs Ganiyat Fawehinmi and son Mohammed Fawehinmi and the daughter for their untiring effort to always be at this annual event.

According to him, it shows love and commitment to the good husband and good father Late Gani was to these people.


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It is my great pleasure to welcome all and sundry to this year’s Gani Fawehinmi Annual Lecture of 2020 which is an annual event held in honour of the late indefatigable Gani Fawehinmi SAN for his great achievements in every area of our national life especially in the usage of law as instrument of social change. No lawyer whether dead or alive is yet to rival his immeasurable contributions to issues of human rights and public interest litigations. He was second to none and his legacy remains the treasure of the legal community until the end of our time. Our choice of the Moderator in the person of Mr Femi Falana SAN is strategic. He is a protege of the late legal guru, he was tutored, mentored and brought up by the late Gani for times like this. He has not been disappointing. He was with Late Gani in most of the struggles while alive. His last dogged fight to extricate Yele Sowore of #RevolutionNow from indefinite detention by the Department of State Security DSS that acted contrary to several court orders is well documented. History will vindicate him for taking the lead in the human rights community to ensure respect and obedience to the dictates of the rule of law and court orders by the present government. Late Gani in his grave will surely be happy that the light he ignited in Nigeria has not been allowed to go dim one second. The Human Rights Community in Nigeria is awake and alive to the glory of our time. Take a look at the Speakers for this great event and you will take a deserved nod that again the choices were apt. Olisa Agbakoba SAN and Tayo Oyetibo SAN were all Students of Late Gani’s school of Philosophy. Two of them had one thing or the other to do with late Gani. One was an associate in the various struggles to liberate Nigeria under the military dictatorial regimes while the other was an employee and later a friend to the late legal guru. They were with him consistently in his persistent fight to liberate Nigerians from bad governance and dictatorship. In their individual rights they are qualified to speak on the topics assigned to them, while Olisa Agbakoba SAN has 45 minutes to deal with our tottering federal structure, Tayo Oyetibo also under 40 minutes will address the issue of judiciary and whether it is under serious threat presently.

The choice of the Chairman is another topic for another day. His brilliance at the Appellate Jurisdiction stood him out. His landmark decision in the case of Faith Okafor Vs Lagos State Government reported in 2016, 4 NWLR Part 1556 at Page 404 is a classical case where the judiciary protected a citizen against unlawful violations of fundamental rights of citizens by the State Government. In that case the learned jurist with other justices declared the restriction in movement on environmental sanitation on every last Saturday as a violation of the fundamental right to freedom of movement and unconstitutional. The judgement was delivered on 4th of November, 2016. Three weeks later on 23rd November, 2016, the Lagos State Government in reaction and in due compliance with the judgment formally abolished every last Saturday of the month as Environmental clean up exercise in the State.
When I informed the stakeholders about his choice as the Chairman, I was applauded for the choice. He is admired and respected by several lawyers of different persuasions. We are grateful for his acceptance.

Is our federal structure right? Is our judiciary under serious threat? Just sit down and listen to these great legal minds and get properly informed.

Our eternal gratitude goes to the wife of late Gani, Mrs Ganiyat Fawehinmi and son Mohammed Fawehinmi and the daughter for their untiring effort to always be at this annual event. It shows love and commitment to the good husband and good father Late Gani was to these people. Mum, son and daughter we are grateful for your continuous presence in this annual ritual of the NBA Ikeja branch. Your effort will never go unrewarded.
To our Chief Host, Mr Dele Adesina SAN, we say thank you. May the expectations of the righteous be met. Let someone say a big amen. To all our Special Guests and they many who are here, you are warmly welcomed. We welcome our amiable Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice Lagos State, Mr Moyosore Onigbanjo SAN. We cannot forget to welcome the new Chief Judge of Lagos State Hon Justice Kazeem Alogba to this event. We are glad you came sir.
To the NBA Ikeja executives, membership, invited guests, men and women, students, journalists, titled Chiefs, traditional rulers, religious leaders, colleagues, learned Seniors, Senior Advocates of Nigeria, judges of all courts and friends once again I welcome you all to this great intellectual event. Sit back and let us talk about our common problems and proffer solutions as Late Gani Fawehinmi would have done if he was here with us. God bless you all.

Monday O. Ubani (MOU) Esq.
Former Chairman, NBA Ikeja and Former 2ND VP, NBA.



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