The Attorney General of the Federation, Mr. Abubakar Malami, has disclosed that the amendment of the Rules of Professional Conduct for Lawyers (RPC) that proceeded from his office did not follow due process and the purported amendment is currently being investigated.
In an interview with Channels TV correspondent on Wednesday, Mr. Malami when asked about the status of the purported amendment of the RPC, which was trailed by several disagreements and criticism from the manner in which his office went about the amendment, responded by saying:
“ Well in all sincerity in [the] art of governance and administration, a lot of issues perhaps unfold and not necessarily perhaps because they were done in the right way and manner. The office of the Attorney General as an institution and indeed the person of the Attorney General, Abubakar Malami, had not taken steps in the direction of consummation and conclusion of a process associated with Rules of Professional Conduct and when eventually the rules were said to have been amended the office of the Attorney General has taken steps to now cause a wholehearted investigation and it has constituted a disciplinary issue that is being considered in the office of the Attorney General. That is the best I can tell you”.
When pressed further as to whether his statement implies that he was not aware of the amendment, the Attorney General said “certainly it was not a process that was officially in line with the tradition, conduct, and context of the process of doing things.”
LEGAL DESK recalls that in September 2020, Lawyers and policymakers woke up to a gazzetted amendment of the Rules of Professional Conduct for Legal Practitioners (RPC) 2007 dated 3rd of September 2020. The said amendments were purportedly made by the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami SAN, and introduced far-reaching implications for law practice in Nigeria. Some of the amendments in the document included removal of the mandatory requirement NBA Stamp and Seal by Legal Practitioners in Nigeria and removal of provisions requiring lawyers acting for Government, ministries, or corporations to pay Annual Bar Practicing fees.
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