A partner in the law firm of Wole Olanipekun & Co., Ms Adekunbi Ogunde, accused of violating the rule of practice by the Nigerian Bar Association, on Wednesday, took a leave of absence from legal practice.
Ogunde had, on June 20, solicited a brief from SAIPEM Contracting Nigeria Ltd, which had already engaged the law firm of Henry Ajumogobia, SAN. This led to the NBA’s call for disciplinary action against her by the Legal Practitioners Disciplinary Committee.
In a statement entitled, ‘My email correspondence of June 20, 2022, and subsequent events,’ Ogunde said contrary to some people’s beliefs, the firm had taken disciplinary action against her.
She also expressed regret that her statement of June 27, where she owned up and clarified that the firm’s founding partner, Wole Olanipekun, SAN, and others didn’t know about her action failed to douse tensions.
The lawyer added that though it might appear that remedial action had not been taken by herself or the firm “by way of discipline, education, reform and rehabilitation concerning me. I wish to state that the firm took such steps but did not believe its actions should be for the media’s attention.
She said that after extensive consultation with her family and the firm and thoroughly examining the issue, she is quitting law practice for a while.
Ogunde said, “I will take a leave of absence from legal practice and get involved in community and social work pro bono, with a few selected NGOs. I will also, during this time, undergo necessary courses to equip myself better in dealing with professional and life issues.”
Ogunde added that she “will return to legal practice after some time, in consultation with my parents, senior colleagues and well-wishers.”