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NBA Lagos & Ikeja Branches Issue Cease-&-Desist To Companies Appointing Non-Lawyers

The Lagos and Ikeja branches of the Nigerian Bar Association, (NBA), have expressed their dismay about the decisions of some companies to appoint non-lawyers as their legal directors.

The body said it had sent letters of cease and desist to six companies, notable among them Promasidor Limited and International Breweries Plc.

The chairmen of both branches, Olabisi Makanjuola (Lagos branch), and Seyi Olawunmi, in their ‘Cease and Desist’ letters, deplored the actions of the affected companies and urged them to desist or face litigation.

Both Promasidor and International Breweries are said to have appointed Polytechnic graduates as their legal directors. The NBA said that the action negate the provision of Sections 22(1) and (5) of the Legal Practitioner’s Act 2004.

The Act, as the NBA said, “prohibits any person who is not a legal practitioner from claiming to be such explicitly or impliedly. It adds that the provisions also “prohibits non-lawyers from using any title or description that could mislead the public to believe that they are qualified to practice law.”

The lawyers union asked the companies to “immediately cease and desist from employing non-lawyers to the position of legal director or any other legal role within your organisations.” It also vowed to take legal actions against the companies, if they fail to comply with its demand.

The body also urged the Chartered Institute of Personnel Management (CIPM) to check the development using their members serving as human resources officers in various organisations

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