Niger State Governor Mohammed Umaru Bago has said his administration will work closely with the International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA) to address gender-related issues.
The Governor made the disclosure when he received the executive members of the association led by its chairperson, Mrs. Bola Jibogun, at the Government House, Minna.
The Governor explained that his administration has lots of programmes and policies for women and children.
He disclosed that 100 appointments will be given to women by his administration, adding that the appointments will be in fulfilment of his promise to carry women along in the implementation of his policies and programmes.
He announced that out of the 100 appointments, FIDA will have four slots and further assured them of working closely with them to address gender-related problems.
The governor said, "FIDA is part of this government, so let us join hands and work together to bring about the desired growth and development of the state.
"There are a lot of women's initiatives; we are creating a lot of desks to address affirmative action and also gender-related issues in this government, and we hope the collaboration will meet the yearnings and aspirations of women".
FIDA Secretary Safura Abdulkareem explained that, as a non-partisan organisation, they protect the rights of women and children as well as stand against any form of Gender-Based Violence.
She expressed the organization's readiness to support the present administration in the state to ensure success.
The association had earlier requested inclusion and recognition by the present government to further carry out their duties effectively.
The Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Olukayode Ariwoola, has urged lawyers to embrace honesty, transparency, and integrity in order to keep the legal profession in high esteem.
Justice Ariwoola gave the charge on Monday in Abuja while declaring open the 2023 Nigerian Bar Association Section on Legal Practise (NBA-SLP) Annual Conference.
The CJN, who was represented by retired Justice Salisu Garba, the Administrator of the National Judicial Institute, said that lawyers had a key role to play in ensuring effective application of laws and guaranteeing legal certainty in the country.
The CJN implored legal professionals not to sit and watch the country deteriorate but to rise to the occasion as lawyers and ensure law and order in the country.
For his part, the President of the NBA, Mr. Yakubu Maikyau, SAN, said in his welcome remarks that a new code of conduct for legal practitioners was set to be launched as part of efforts to fight corruption.
Maikyau said that the association’s commitment to the fight against corruption was an inherent responsibility of all lawyers that must be upheld.
He said the new code of conduct for lawyers would be inaugurated on January 1, 2024.
Maikyau decried the situation where senior Advocates were denying junior lawyers access to them.
"It is tyrannical for senior advocates not to allow their juniors access to them.
"They are supposed to be mentored, but if they do not see you, how can you mentor them?
"Stop building barricades around yourselves and allow your juniors access to you," Maikyau said.
Welcoming participants to the conference, the Chairman of NBA-SLP, Mr. Ferdinand Orbih, SAN, said that the age of artificial intelligence had widened the legal space, which lawyers should take advantage of.
The senior lawyer said the theme of the 2023 conference was chosen to engage with global issues of transformation in the legal profession.
"The age of artificial intelligence and the largely unexplored legal spaces interrogate the widening scope of the legal services market and lift the veil of jurisdictional stonewalling."
Also speaking, the Chairman of the Central Planning Committee of the 2023 NBA-SLP Annual Conference, Mr. Paul-Harris Ogbole, SAN, urged lawyers to take advantage of the conference to deepen their knowledge of globalisation in the practise of law.
Ogbole said that the conference would, in particular, examine the future of legal services in Nigeria and beyond.
"The conference will also examine topical issues such as exploring the frontiers of dispute resolution in investment matters, organ donation, and transplantation under Nigerian law, among other topics.
The senior lawyer said that the conference would further examine the practise of law in Nigeria in an ever-globalised and internationalised environment.
For his part, the Chairman of NBA, Abuja Branch, Mr. Afam Okeke, said that the conference would afford legal practitioners the opportunity to exchange knowledge, cross-fertilise ideas, and reflect on the evolving nature of the legal profession.
Okeke said that as lawyers saddled with the responsibility of global transformation, addressing cross-border disputes, and tackling transnational legal issues, it was important to come together to rub minds.
He encouraged participants to actively engage in conversations, build new relationships, and seize the opportunity to collaborate on future endeavours.
The theme for the 2023 Conference is "Legal Practise Without Borders".