The Acting Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Onnoghen, has advised newly admitted lawyers to the Nigerian Bar to put the interest of their clients and the larger society into consideration while discharging their duties.
The Acting CJN, who performed his first official call-to-bar ceremony on Monday in Abuja, cautioned the new lawyers that the Body of Benchers would not hesitate to sanction any erring legal practitioner.
He consequently advised them to perform their roles with integrity and competence
While reminding them of the rules of professional conduct, Justice Onnoghen charged the lawyers to shun any act that would bring the profession into disrepute.
“As ministers in the temple of justice, it is never enough to solely protect the interest of your client. You must strive to attain justice above all and not derail its course even if it may not favour your client. You must avoid sharp practices.
“The role of lawyers is multi-faceted; it cuts across virtually every stratum of the society. In all these, you are expected to maintain the highest professional standard of integrity and competence at all times. This should be your watch word,” Onnoghen said.
The Director General, Nigerian Law School, Mr. Olanrewaju Onadeko (SAN), while presenting the new lawyers to the Body of Benchers, decried what he termed the “continuing challenge of violation of admission quotas” by some faculties of law in the country.
Onadeko noted that the allocated figures to law faculties were a product of evaluation of available resources that could cater for the academic needs of the students.