The Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami on Thursday shunned the court hearing of a suit challenging the legality of his unilateral amendment of the Rules of Professional Conduct for Legal Practitioners (RPC), 2007.
The Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) Incorporated Trusteeshad sued Malami at the Federal High Court in Abuja, querying among others, his powers to amend the RPC and some of the amendments effected.
The NBA in the suit marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/77/2022 contended that the power to amend the RPC lies with the General Council of the Bar and not the AGF, who is just a member.
At the mention of the case the AGF listed as the sole defendant, was absent. He was also not represented by any lawyer.
Lawyer to the plaintiff, Sunday Ameh (SAN) expressed disappointment that the AGF was absent and was not also represented, despite being served with hearing notice.
Ameh noted that the AGF has filed a memorandum of conditional appearance and counter-affidavit, but wondered why he would shun court.
He said since the case was coming up for the first time, the court should reschedule hearing for a later date to enable the AGF or his lawyer appear to participate in the hearing of the case.
In his ruling, Justice Donatus Okorowo noted there was evidence that the AGF was duly served with the hearing notice and originating processes in the case.
Justice Okorowo further noted that the AGF has taken steps in the case by filing memorandum of appearance and counter affidavit.
The judge then proceeded to adjourned till May 12 for hearing.
The NBA President, Olumide Akpata, led some other lawyers to court to witness Thursday’s proceedings.