“Only a life lived in service to others is worth living” – Albert Einstein
I, Orowhuo W. A. Okocha, Esq., fondly called “Oros” by my friends, colleagues and associates, am a proud alumnus of both the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), Kumasi, Ghana, where I obtained my LLB, and Brunel University, London, United Kingdom, where I obtained both an LLM and a PhD.
I was called to the Bar in Nigeria in 2008, and also certified as a professional Negotiator and Mediator in the same year. After completing the mandatory NYSC programme in the Law Firm of J-K GADZAMA & PARTNERS in 2009, I proceeded to the United Kingdom to further my education and, even though I returned to practice for brief stints at the Law Firm of OKOCHA & OKOCHA in 2012 and 2013, I did not resume full time legal practice in Nigeria until January, 2016, when I formally joined the said Law Firm. A year later, in 2017, I rose to become the Assistant Managing Solicitor of OKOCHA & OKOCHA, a position I hold till date.
Following my return to practice from my academic sojourn, I have taken a very keen interest in Bar activities, and I am an active member of the Nigerian Bar Association, Port Harcourt Branch and regularly attend Branch Monthly Meetings, and participate in other activities organised for and by the Branch. I am currently serving as the Secretary of Panel 3 of the Disciplinary Committee of the NBA Port Harcourt Branch.
Against the backdrop of my academic sojourn in both Ghana and the United Kingdom, I have been exposed to a diverse variety of persons from a divergent and extensive number of ethnic backgrounds and nationalities, and I am quite adept at engaging with and collaborating with people from all walks of life. Additionally, undertaking my PhD studies left me with the indelible impression that in every endeavour one undertakes, it is not enough to simply participate, but one must work hard and strive to leave a mark in the annals of history. It is with this in mind, coupled with the conviction that service to the Bar and to the Legal Profession is paramount, and should take priority over personal aggrandizement, that I am seeking election to the office of Secretary of the Port Harcourt Branch of the Nigerian Bar Association at the Branch Elections slated to hold in June, 2020.
There is no gainsaying that, in recent years, the standards, dignity, respect and professionalism typically attributed to our noble profession appear to be rapidly declining, albeit through no fault of the outgoing Executive Committee, or any of their predecessors in office. If elected, what I will offer to this great and noble Branch is loyal and dedicated service with zeal and assiduity, coupled with a willingness to work under the direction and guidance of the elected Branch Chairman, together with the other duly elected and/or appointed members of the incoming Executive Committee. As one adept at engaging and collaborating with people from all walks of life, as aforesaid, I would also have no difficulty in engaging with all the different members of our great branch from the divergent tribes and backgrounds, and using this divergent background of our different members to galvanise a synergy for our collective and common good – I shall find and take advantage of the unity in our diversity.
It would be very remiss of me to put forward a manifesto without acknowledging the efforts and strides taken by my predecessors in the office that I am seeking election into. There have been robust steps taken by previous Secretaries, in collaboration with the previous Executive Committees serving the Branch at the material time, to embrace the emerging technologies and ICT/Digital Compliance, including steps taken to achieve the dispatch and distribution of notices, minutes of meetings and other correspondence via email, and the development and launch of the NBA PH Mobile App, through which correspondence is circulated, and a digital directory of all members of the Branch kept and maintained. The current, outgoing Secretary, in collaboration with the entire outgoing Executive Committee, has continued to maintain the said “digitally compliant” Branch Secretariat, and has also taken it a step further by creating a Telegram© Group for the quick, efficient dissemination of information to members of the Branch. If elected, I will also seek to offer continuity, with improvements where necessary, to the outstanding work done by the outgoing Branch Secretary and his predecessors in office, in a bid to have a robustly “digitally compliant” Branch Secretariat, one abreast with modern communication methods to achieve effective and efficient dissemination of information. I would further seek to make my own contributions, within the scope of my duties and functions, to every effort to restore the Branch, and by extension the Bar, and indeed the entire Legal Profession in Nigeria, to the glorious heights and days of yore!
Vote for OROS! Vote OROWHUO W. A. OKOCHA, ESQ. for SECRETARY, NBA PORT HARCOURT BRANCH!!!
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