By Ugo Aliogo
Human rights activist, Mr. Festus Keyamo, has dedicated the Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) award to be conferred on him by the federal government to the weak and defenceless.
Â Keyamo, in a statement yesterday said although it was a long and tortuous road, â€œfull of thorns and thistles, but to the glory of Almighty God,â€ he finally became a SAN.
Keyamo pointed out that even though the award showed that he has reached the pinnacle of his career as a lawyer and as an advocate, â€œthis is the beginning and not the end.â€
According to him, for too long the Inner Bar had been perceived as too elitist and deployed only in the service and defence of the rich and powerful or the upper echelon in society.
That narrative, Keyamo said has to change, saying there cannot be greater injustice than giving arms to the already powerful to fight the weak and defenceless.
He stressed that the only honour he can do to the silk robes he adorns is to help the weak, defenceless and just, against what he described as the oppressive might of the powerful and unjust.
â€œAnd on the flip side, it is also to ensure that the weak do not use the weakness as an excuse to unjustly blackmail the powerful and manipulate society.
â€œFor me, my admission into the Inner Bar is an encouragement to continue to speak truth to power; to continue to hold government accountable to the people; to continue to confront the high and mighty in defence of truth and justice; to make my modest contributions to the reforms in the judiciary and to continue in the pro-people path I charted for myself since my call to Bar.
â€œI would not thank all those who wished me well in this journey. Why? Because, we succeeded together; it is our collective elevation. It is those who did not wish me well that I wish to thank specially. Why? Because, they were the ones who pushed me to my limits in order to succeed,â€ he added.