YLF Port Harcourt; Setting The Records Straight.

Dear Seniors and Colleagues,
It has come to my knowledge via several WhatsApp platforms that allegation of embezzlement of funds belonging to the Young Lawyers Forum, Port Harcourt was made against my person, the vice chairman, Secretary and other members of the Forum as stated in the purported notice of suspension.
Let it be on record that there has been no formal complaint of the above mentioned allegation which would have afforded me the opportunity to respond and clear my name. The published allegation is vexatious, insulting and obviously actionable and I don’t understand why colleagues will allow themselves to be used to divide the Young Lawyers Forum, Port Harcourt.
Since inception as Chairman it is audible to the deaf and visible to the blind that the Young Lawyers Forum, Port Harcourt grew in leaps and bounds to the admiration and commendation of the mother branch and other branches of the Nigerian Bar Association nationwide. This was achieved as a result of the collective effort of the current Exco and the cooperation of the members and for almost two years down the line we have worked peacefully and became friends.
The summit we held on the 20th October, 2023 is adjudged to be one of the best in Nigeria and some members of the Exco were also members of the planning committee who were privy to the information of funds received and names of donors.
In January, 2024, we agreed as Exco, in our virtual meeting, that candidates in the 2024 branch elections can be invited as resource persons in our CLE Sessions.
The first we invited in our February meeting was Madam Felicia Nwoke, who performed exceptionally well to the admiration of both Seniors and young lawyers present. Our March meeting could not hold because of the NBA-SBL Eastern Zonal Conference and the Eastern Bar Forum Quarterly Meeting. Thus the meeting was moved to April.
The CLE Committee of the Young Lawyers Forum, Port Harcourt invited Mrs Cordelia Eke as a resource person in the just concluded April meeting and I was bewildered on how and why this became an issue with some aggrieved Exco members and some senior lawyers. It now became clear at some point that politics has now affected the duties and responsibilities of these aggrieved Exco members.The Justice Mary Odili Judicial Institute which was the venue of the meeting was invaded by some aggrieved Exco members who constituted nuisances to the hearing of staff including the Administrator of the Institute. This is a character unbecoming of lawyers and should be condemned and discouraged and no right thinking lawyer would/should support such disorderly and degenerate behaviour. Let it be on record that a parallel YLF meeting held at the NBA House by those who signed the purported notice.
The Young Lawyers Forum, as I know, is not a political party within the Nigerian Bar Association and no such political party should exist within the Port Harcourt Bar and I hereby, call on all young lawyers to desist from being used as political attack dogs. We are first, legal practitioners before becoming members of the Bar and let me also state that the Nigerian Bar Association exist because there is a Legal Profession not the Profession existing for the Bar.
Let us not deviate from upholding and protecting the rule of law to offending the core principle of integrity that we ought to imbibe at all times. I have done my part by contributing to legal knowledge at such a tender age at the Bar as an author and law lecturer and will continue to do more. It is now up to you to carve your niche and write your names in gold.
Let me state that the Young Lawyers Forum is NOT divided and the Branch is currently intervening with a view to resolving all issues raised.
I leave you with the thought provoking words of Bob Marley that ‘The greatness of a man is not in how much wealth he acquires, but in his integrity and his ability to affect those around him positively.’
Thank you.Dr Victor N. Enebeli,

YLF Port Harcourt

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