Bar Associations as Watchdogs to National, African, Commonwealth and International Law/Arbitration: Analysis of the Legal Strength in Nigerian, African, Commonwealth and International Bar Associations’ Constitutions

Abstract

The Bar as it relates to law depicts the profession of Barrister or a Lawyer in a higher court. To be called to the Bar means allowed to work as a qualified barrister. Association on the other hand is an official group of people who have joined together for a particular purpose. In Nigeria, the association of Lawyers is called Nigerian Bar Association (otherwise, called the NBA). In Africa, the association shall be known as the African Bar Association (otherwise, called AFBA), in the Commonwealth it is Lawyer’s Association otherwise called CLA. At the international level, the name of the corporation is the International Bar Association (otherwise, called the IBA). The Bar Association whether in Nigeria, Africa, Commonwealth or the world plays among other roles to promote the administration of justice under the rule of Law among Nigerians, Africans, Commonwealth and the people of the world. This Rule of Law is the Supremacy of regular as opposed to arbitrary power; the absence of any arbitrary power on the part of the government. Promotion of rule of Law is that a Lawyer is called to the Bar to discharge. Associations of these Lawyers otherwise called Bar Association have the promotion of rule of Law as one of their objects. This paper therefore is aimed to analyze how this association of Lawyers in Nigeria, Africa, Commonwealth and the world can compel their respective governments to operate within the ambit of the rule of Law, else, they may be compelled to take legal action in Court of Law for the promotion and protection of the principles of the rule of Law, to advance the science of jurisprudence and to promote in the execution of these objects the principles and aims of the United Nations in their legal aspects and to cooperate with and promote coordination among international judicial organizations having similar purpose. Recommendations were made to the effect that Nigerian and African Bar Associations should reform, emulate and develop their constitutions as the international Bar Association had done so that their objects will continue to compel their governments for more adherence to their legal and advisory portions in the affairs of their country or region so as to ensure Legal political and economic development within their jurisdictions.

Keywords: African, Bar Association, Commonwealth and International Bar Association and Constitutions, Legal strength, Nigeria, Watchdog

Article Review Status: Published

Pages: 59-72 (Download PDF)

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