The leadership of the New Nigerian Bar Association said they are extending their membership beyond the North, noting that the body is not about regional affairs.
One of the conveners of the new body of lawyers, Nuhu Ibrahim, said this in an exclusive interview with The PUNCH in Kaduna on Tuesday.
According to him, membership of the New NBA is open to all lawyers across the country who share their ideals.
He listed the ideal to include the promotion of justice, equity and the rule of law.
“Any lawyer that shares our ideals of promoting justice, equality, rule of law, is welcome,” he said.
Ibrahim insisted that they had the right as enshrined in the constitution to belong to any association and at the same time opt out whenever necessary.
He, however, said the motive behind the NNBA was not to create a crack in the NBA.
He said, “In my own view, as far as I am concerned, there is no crack in the legal profession. You may wish to say there is a crack in the NBA but that’s in your own opinion, as so many people see it. But I don’t see it that way.
“What we are out to do is not to create a crack. What we are out to do is to bring harmony that is based on justice, rule of law and equity. So, I don’t see how somebody who is out to ensure that there is equity and rule of law, is out to create cracks.
“To have an alternate platform is a constitutional right of all as enshrined in the constitution. The fact that you are a lawyer does not mean you will remain within the fold of the NBA as an association which is just like any other association in the country.
“The constitution recognises that one can be a member of any association that you want and you can always opt out as you wish.
“We do not share the belief that we are out to create any problem. I don’t see how anybody who wants to exercise his constitutional rights is trying to cause any problem.”