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Editorial: AGF will be pleased seeing Abdulrahman sworn-in as Kwara governor

Abdulrazaq Abdulrahman, Kwara State Governor-Elect

On March 29, the body of benchers honoured one hundred and thirty-two outstanding lawyers in Abuja. The Body of Benchers is a statutory body established by the Legal Practitioner Act of 1962 responsible for the call to the bar of persons seeking to be legal well as discipline of the erring lawyers. Among those honoured by the body was Alhaji Abdul Ganiyu Folorunsho Abdulrazaq (91). 

He is number 460 in the Nigerian Legal Practitioners list and the first lawyer from Northern Nigeria.

He was 'call to bar' on February 8, 1955 but was enrolled to practice on April 1, 1955. Among his colleagues at that time were Mr. Justice Victor Orereko Ovie-Whiskey, who was number 437 call to bar on August 6, 1954 but was enrolled on December 18, 1954. Chief Michael Adedapo Omisade was number 513 call to bar February 7, 1956 but enrolled on March 23, 1956. Chief Osuolale Abimbola Akinjide was number 509, call to bar on February 7, 1956 but enrolled on March 12, 1956, Chief Adeniran Ogunsanya was number 535 call to bar on June 19, 1956 but enrolled on September 15, 1956, Chief Akin Olugbade was number 402, call to bar on November 24, 1953 but enrolled on January 2, 1954, Mr. Justice Francis Ome Nwokedi was number 459, call to bar on November 23, 1954 but enrolled on March 26, 1955.

Chief Nabo Bekinbo Graham Douglas (1926-2006), that tall imposing figure from Abonema, was number 493, call to bar on June 28, 1955 but enrolled on December 3, 1955. Chief Graham Douglas was the second Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) after Chief Alade Rotimi Williams (1920-2005) while Chief Obafemi Awolowo (1909-1987) was the third SAN. Chief Obafemi Awolowo was number 168, call to bar on November 18, 1946 and was enrolled December 24, 1946. Justice Sir Louis Nwachukwu Mbanefo (1911-1977), the first lawyer from the old eastern region, was call to bar on November 18, 1935 and enrolled on August 13, 1937. Justice O. Shomolu was call to bar on January 27, 1947 and enrolled on March 27, 1947. Justice Godfrey Charles Ubaka Agbakoba was call to bar on June 6 1951 and enrolled on August 7, 1951. Chief Samuel Ladoke Akintola was call to bar on January 26, 1950 and enrolled on March 31, 1950.

But equally deserving was the award given to him by the people of Kwara State when they elected his son, Abdulraham Abdulrazaq as their governor on March 9, which was a collective effort involving prominent people of Kwara State. The governor-elect is the Managing Director of First Fuels Limited and an ex-student of Government College, Kaduna. There is a wall of difference between winning election and governing well. Elections make fundamental contributions to democratic governance. The main purpose of democracy is not only to win elections but good governance. What the people of Kwara State want is not a mere change from Saraki dynasty to Abdulrazak dynasty but a positive change for the better.

The 'OTO GE' movement was a clarion call for good governance the forces that drove the Saraki dynasty out of power are still around and more reinforced and alert. With the gubernatorial election last month, the torch has now been passed to the Abdulrazaq family. Public service runs in the family of Abdulrazaq in Ilorin. Twenty years ago, the first daughter of the family, Khairat Abdulrazaq Gwadabe was elected a Senator in Abuja. Abdulrazaq himself entered politics as early as 1952. Between 1957 and 1960, he was a member of Northern House of Assembly. He became the Nigerian Ambassador to Cote Ivoire between 1960 and 1962. Between 1962 and 1964, he was a cabinet Minister of Nigeria Railway Corporation and a member of Parliament.

Following the creation of Kwara State in 1967, he was appointed Commissioner for Finance and later Commissioner for Health and Social Welfare. In 1975, General Murtala Mohammed appointed him as a member of the 50-man Constitutional Drafting Committee. He was later made the Chairman of the sub-committee of the Executive and the Legislature.

He is a very simple individual, a gentleman to the core with high intellect. He lives in a world of ideas who loose grip on Kwara State politics. Dr. Abubakar Olusola Saraki was emerging as the de-jure and the defacto leader in Kwara State politics.

Before 1974, Alhaji Abdulrazaq was the leader especially in Ilorin. In 1976, because of Dr. Saraki's dominance in NPN at that time, Alhaji Abdulrazaq opted for the GNPP of Alhaji Waziri Ibrahim in 1978. Nothing will please him today than seeing his son, Abdulraham being sworn-in as governor of Kwara State on Wednesday, May 29. The inauguration will no doubt bring back his glory in Kwara State.

Editorial: AGF will be pleased seeing Abdulrahman sworn-in as Kwara governor Reviewed by nationalmoonlight on April 17, 2019 Rating: 5

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