First female Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Chief Folake Solanke has appealed to senior lawyers who utilize the services of young lawyers in pupillage to stop treating them like slaves.
Solanke who stated this at the launching of Dele Adesina (SANs) book and celebration of his 35 years in the legal profession said when pupil lawyers are engaged, they should be paid adequately well.
She said lawyers are not like illegal immigrants who are being sold into slavery in Libya in this 21st century.
The event had other speakers such as Professor Konyinsola Ajayi, Chief Wole Olanipekun (SAN), Professor Fabian Ajogwu (SAN) among others.
Her words: “Only slaves work for no pay or very poor pay because a slave is the legal property of the slaver. A lawyer is certainly not the property of a learned senior or any other person. When I was in pupillage, I was paid.”
Also, she enjoined judges and lawyers to engage in soul-searching and self-examination in order to tackle the hydra-headed monster of corruption.
Similarly, Olanipekun, urged young lawyers to work diligently and also be accommodative.
He stated that the young ones must learn with patience and also learn from their colleagues.
Ajogwu beseeched practitioners to define what type of lawyer they want to be and what type of law practice they want to have.
“There is something about measuring your success by what you have produced, not just the income from your pocket. You have to look at it and say what has my profession done, it might have given you firm, income, wealth, but the thing is that what have you done for the profession, what have you created, what bar center did you empower, what endowment did you put in place,” he asked.
Editor in chief of the book, Professor Adebambo Adewope (SAN), said the book provides a conversational platform for the discussion and cross-fertilization of different perspective and insight of various topical areas that defines the landscape of law and practice in Nigeria.
“It examines the contemporary areas and practice. It is arranged across general and specialized different spheres, which include the constitution, administration of justice, practice and procedure, fundamental rights and among others,” he remarked.
The host, Adesina in his address called for the stoppage of the politicization of the judiciary.
“The judiciary that once produced legal icons and jurists of immense stature like Kayode Esho, Alfa Belgore and many others should not be casually condemned as corrupt.
“To say that Nigerian judiciary is corrupt is an unacceptable generalization and this must yield up to specifics,” he stressed.