September 19, 2023

Address By The Immediate Past Chairman Arewa Young Lawyers Forum.

Historically today, exactly 5 years ago, at this same city, Abuja Arewa YLF was birthed on 1st September 2018, by the following leaders: Olayinka Dauda Jimoh (Kwara), Audu Umaru Master (Borno), Ahmed Khalil (Yobe), Paul Gbande (Katsina), Haruna Musa Muhammed (Kano), Isaac Fumen Gandu (Kaduna), Gotom Samson (Plateau), Sadiq Maaji (Niger), Emmanuel Mijebi (Kogi), Ibrahim Shehu (Jigawa), Isa Habila Barau (Bauchi) and Abdulsalam Hussain (Suleja). The branches of the NBA – YLF leaders of the Arewa axis as mentioned above agreed to create the forum in order to amongst other things, constitute a strong force and represent the interest of young lawyers of the northern extraction. For the record, we were all the Chairmen of the Nigerian Bar Association – Young Lawyers Forum of our respective Branches.

From our first meeting, the followings persons emerged as the pioneer leaders of the forum:

1, O. D Jimoh – Chairman

2, Gotom Samson – Vice Chairman

3, Haruna Musa Muhammed – Secretary

4, Isaac Fumen Gandu – Assistant Secretary

5, Audu Umaru Master – Welfare Secretary

6, Ahmed Khalil – Treasurer

7, Paul Gbande – Publicity Secretary

8, Isa Habila Barau – Financial Secretary

9, Abdulsalam Hussain – Provost

However. the forum also had its own share of challenges as serious campaign was launched against the forum by rather pessimistic individuals who did not understand the reason for the forum. Fortunately, the pioneer leaders of the forum remained resolute, undistracted and undeterred and today, the rest is history. Since then, the forum has unarguably put on a strong footing for sustainable development.

Part of the achievements of the forum under the leadership of the pioneer leaders are as follows:

1, Promotion and sustainability of the nascent forum

2, Written of the forum’s 2023 Constitution

3, Organization of the 1st Summit in Abuja

4, Registration of forum’s Bank Account

5, Securing of office space for the forum in FCT, Abuja

6, Transition to new leadership

Another achievement worthy of being mentioned is the huge respect the forum commands in NBA polity. The forum is so recognized and respected that 3 of its pioneer leaders were co-opted into NBA NEC by NBA President, Y.C Maikyau SAN, OON.

I want to say, the pioneer leaders made huge contributions sacrificially to the creation and sustainability of the forum.

Today 31st day of August 2023, the pioneer leaders voluntarily decided to leave the stage for the new leaders who are as follows:

1, Umar Abdullah Ciroma: Chairman

2, Hamzat Dantani : Vice Chairman

3, A. S Garba: Deputy Chairman North East

4, A T Jubril: Provost

5, Sulaiman Toyin Yahaya: Secretary

6, Isaac Adakole: Deputy Chairman North Central

7, JOHNSON PIUS AYAH: Publicity Secretary

8, Freda Nzang: Assistant Secretary

9, Rahama, M.A: Deputy Chairman North West

10, Habeeb Dembo: Welfare Secretary

11, Bikisu Khaleel : Financial Secretary

12, Henry Omanga: Treasurer

I congratulate these new leaders and wish them a successful tenure. I have no doubt whatsoever on their competence and capability in raising the bar higher and sustaining the gains recorded by the pioneer leaders. I urge all the members of the forum to give them their support.

May I at this juncture appreciate all the members of the forum for their unflinching support in the course of our leadership.

Similarly, worthy of mention is the effort of the outgone Exco in the constitution drafting committee chaired by my very good friend, Sani S. Idris of Kaduna Branch. For the record, the other members of the constitution drafting committee are: Sadiq Maaji (Vice Chairman), Ibrahim T. Monguno (Secretary), Yunusa I Mai’adashi (Member), Yusuf Sulaiman (Member), Ibn Mahmud Haruna Geo (member), Usman Ashafa (Member). Similarly, I thank all the members of the Summit Planning Committee for their huge contributions which had Dayo Ashonibare as chairman and Dauda Rahila (secretary).

Arewa YLF under our leadership is indebted to the following bar leaders for their exceptional support, guidance and advice: K.K Eleja SAN, Tijjani Alkali Gazali SAN, Chief R.O Balogun, Mr Liman Salihu, Mr Aminu Sani Gadanya and Hajia Muhammad Adama.

On a final note, I salute the pioneer leaders for their doggedness and sacrifices geared towards creation and stability of the forum. We have indeed written our names in gold.

Dated 1st September 2023.


O.D Jimoh Esq,
(Pioneer Chairman, Arewa YLF 2018-2023)

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