Popular Edo Lawyer, Douglas Show Proof of Qualifications To Practice, Others…
Following viral social media reports which purportedly claimed that the former Publicity Secretary of the Edo State branch of the Nigerian Bar Association, NBA, Barrister Douglas Ogbankwa name could not be found on rolls of legal Practitioners kept in the Supreme court of Nigeria, the lawyer has reacted to the allegations while displaying his qualifications and call to bar letter to practice in 2007.
Ogbankwa’s reaction is coming as some of his classmates right from his days in University of Benin and call mates, weekend rose to the defence of the Edo based Legal practitioner and socialite.
Recall a City Lawyer, an online publication had published an exclusive story based on a letter the online publication obtained dated January 12, 2023, titled “Request For Confirmation of The Name of Douglas Ogbankwa On the Roll Of Legal Practitioners In Nigeria”.
The letter also stated that “the said lawyer is at liberty to come forward with his call to Bar Certificate and Qualifying Certificate for enrolment”.
The Apex court further added, “ If he has changed his name, he is expected to come along with duly stamped deed pall and all requirements for change of name in the Supreme Court. The stamped letter questioning Ogbankwa qualification and call to Bar was signed by one Henrietta Aduwak Akyang on behalf of the Chief Registrar of the Supreme Court, Hajo Sarki Bello.
Miffed by the embarrassing publication, Ogbankwa assembles all his certificates and letter and other relevant documents in response to the Supreme Court inquires.
One of his classmate to the lawyer, Bridget Agbebaku, however attributed Ogbankwa’s ordeal to bad politics and envy.
In a statement she titled, “Facts Evidencing Douglas Ogbankwa as Being a Lawyer called to Practice Law in Nigeria” insisted that Ogbankwa is a qualified lawyer.
“Both of us were called together in May 2007, at the Call to Bar Ceremony, in Bwari, presided over by Hon. Justice Umaru Abdullahi (the then Chairman of the Body of Benchers ) .
“This whole thing is all about politics, the Supreme Court never said Douglas is not a lawyer, he said the name is not on the roll (Aguguom his former name is on the roll. Ogbankwa his current name on the NBA Records, (Including NBA Stamp and Seal issued with the Name : Douglas Ogbankwa, with the same call number: 055406 that is on the roll of the Supreme Court with his former name, Douglas Ogbankwa.
“That does not mean he is not a lawyer called to the Nigerian Bar that is why the letter said he is at liberty to come with his call to Bar Certificate and other documents, to put the new name under the space of the old name (as is the tradition). If he was not a lawyer , the letter would have said he is not called to the Nigerian Bar.
He changed his name from “AGUGUOM”, to “Ogbankwa, so recourse must be made to his change of name and the newspaper publication. Which is in the public space.
“Razak Isenalumhe who wrote the letter, asking for the clarification has himself appointed Douglas Ogbankwa into countless Committees of the NBA, Benin Branch and he was even the one that asked others to step down for Douglas Ogbankwa that made him run unopposed.
“Rasaq Isenalumhe former NBA Chairman coordinated the movements of some young lawyers to Uyo in 2014, when Austin Alegeh SAN, FCIArb UK, was NBA President and Douglas Ogbankwa was the only young lawyer that spoke at SLP Conference in the Ibom Le Meredian in Uyo presided over by the Charismatic former President of the NBA -Chief OCJ Okocha .
“The Call Number of Douglas Ogbankwa 055406 is borne only by Douglas Ogbankwa in ‘Stamp and Seal’ delivered by the NBA and that ‘Stamp and Seal’ has been used to practice law widely all across Nigeria. The call number is the same call number that is on the roll Douglas & Onyebuchi, both names of the subject are on the roll of lawyers called to practice law in Nigeria.
It was learnt that Ogbankwa had filed a multi-billion naira suit against the said publication.