Seeks His Punishment Over Remarks On Tribunal Judgement
By Bolaji Olaniyi
A media practitioner and political activist, Comrade Akanbi Omolaja, has petitioned the Nigeria Bar Association’s Legal Practitioners Disciplinary Committee over what he called an uncomplimentary and unprofessional remarks of an Osun-based legal practitioner, Mr. Kolapo Alimi.
In the petition, a copy of which was sent to the media this Monday, Comrade Omolaja said Barrister Alimi flouted Section 31 of the Legal Practitioners Act of 2007 which says “A lawyer shall always treat the court with respect with respect, dignity and honour. And where the lawyer has a proper ground for complaint against a judicial officer, he shall make his complaint to the appropriate authorities.
Part of the petition reads,
“Mr Kolapo Alimi, upon whom this petition is brought, is a member of the Nigerian Bar Association, Ikirun Branch.
“Mr Kolapo Alimi was one of the legal counsels engaged by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Governor Ademola Adeleke to defend them against a petition filed by former Governor Gboyega Oyetola at the Osun State Governornship Election Petition Tribunal.
“On Friday, 27th January, 2023 the Tribunal delivered its judgement which did not favour Mr Alimi’s clients.
“But rather than venting his anger through the appropriate legal mechanism, Mr Kolapo Alimi, on the same 27th January, 2023, chose to resort to self-help by inciting an assemblage of party faithful against the persons of the Tribunal judges.
“In a trending two minutes, fifty seconds video (2:50′), rendered in Yoruba Language, Mr Alimi was captured visibly hurling condescending expletives on the Tribunal judges who gave unfavourable judgements against his clients.
“Mr Kolapo Alimi did not only question the professional competence of the Tribunal judges, he equally indicted their moral integrity.
“This action of Mr Kolapo Alimi is not in consonance with the relevant codes set for the proper conduct of legal practitioners in Nigeria.
“His undignified or discourteous conduct at the referenced gathering was calculated to curry public sympathies aimed at tarnishing the good image of the Bench, in particular, and the Judiciary, in general.
“His indecorous statement is also capable of causing chaos in the state because his audience, mostly unlettered old people, may not understand the right import of the judgment of the Tribunal, hence be tempted to take laws into their hands in the guise of protecting a ‘stolen mandate’ of their political hero.
“And to sustain the good name of the judiciary, I plead that Mr Kolapo Alimi be investigated and appropriate sanction meted to him to serve as a deterrence to other legal practitioners who may want to elevate their emotion over proper professional conduct.”
However, attempts made by this reporter to get the reaction of Mr Kolapo Alimi did not yield any good result before filing this report as multiple calls made to his mobile lines were returned unsuccessful.