A Senior Advocate of Nigeria, SAN, Mr. Mikhail Bashua, 89, has encouraged younger lawyers who wish to excel, to make honesty their watchword and cultivate a culture of integrity.
He spoke in Lagos at an event to mark the 50th anniversary of M. A. Bashua & Co, the law firm he founded.
He said: “Young lawyers must be honest and understand the fact that law is the noblest profession, so they have to uphold its etiquettes.
“Upholding the profession’s etiquettes will get you anywhere you want to go. Never allow overburdened interests to becloud you as a lawyer, the client’s interest should always come first.”
Explaining the reason for the event, Mr. Moshood Bashua one of the sons of the octogenarian, said it was not only to mark the 50th anniversary of the firm, but also to celebrate the firm’s Founder, Mr. Bashua(SAN), “while he is alive.”
The event was attended by judges, members of the inner and outer Bar, family and clients.
Aderemi showered praises on his father for showing him the ropes in law practice, adding that his father’s good reputation opened doors for and earned him friends “in the most unexpected of places.”
Aderemi said: “Its continuous legal practice and consultancy services has been mostly recognised in several ground breaking cases, one of which is the case of Mohammed v. Olawunmi (1990).
“This case, upon the judgment by the Supreme Court, became an authority often cited by lawyers and the courts.
“The principle of law in that case is when a decision of court is regarded as a final or interlocutory decision and whether a party appealing to an appellate court requires leave of court before appealing against an interlocutory decision of court.
“The case became a locus classicus on those two issues of law. The Supreme Court agreed with Mr. Adisa Bashua that leave of court was necessary.”
For Justice Dawodu, whose father, M. A. Dawodu, is also a Lagos lawyer, it was difficult for people to tell which law firm he belonged to— his father’s or Bashua’s.
“This was because I regularly practiced with both law firms,” he said.
The judge added: “I thank God for making today possible to gather in honour of our father. I cannot say much about my life without mentioning Alhaji Bashua and the chambers of Alhaji Bashua.
“I am one of those who benefited immensely from his wisdom and guidance.”