By Saikou S. Jabai
The Gambia Bar Association issued a press release yesterday dissociating itself from the African Bar Association that has just visited The Gambia. It says the African Bar Association does not represent lawyers at the continental level as the name suggests. Below is the full text of the release:
GAMBIA BAR ASSOCIATION STATEMENT ON THE VISIT OF THE AFRICAN BAR ASSOCITION
“The Gambia Bar Association is not connected or associated with Mr Hannibal Uwaifo and his organisation, the African Bar Association.
The general public is hereby notified that this organisation does not represent all or any associations or bodies of African lawyers as its name suggests.
The said African Bar Association is not connected or associated with the Nigerian Bar Association although its members are predominantly Nigerian. It also is not connected or associated with the Pan African Lawyers Union, the International Bar Association, the African Development Bank or related entities.
The original African Bar Association that was formed in 1971 in Nigeria was dissolved and merged with associations all over Africa resulting in the creation of the Pan African Lawyers Union (PALU). PALU that is the credible and most widely recognised legitimate representative of African lawyers and Associations.
The organisation promoted by Mr Uwaifo since 2015 has previously attempted to inaugurate itself in The Gambia through a proposed ‘Rebirth’ conference.
The GBA could not in good conscience participate in such an event taking into account the lack of capacity, competence and resources from Mr Uwaifo’s team.
We therefore confirm that the Gambia Bar Association and its international partners have no connection or affiliation to Mr Uwaifo or his organisation.”