By Bartholomew Madukwe
Lagos division of the Court of Appeal, Tuesday, ordered that the suit filed before a Federal High Court, Lagos, against Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) over the collection of the newly introduced practising fee for lawyers, be assigned to another judge and should be given accelerated hearing.
The appellate court gave the order as it upturned Justice Rita Ofile-Agumogobia ruling which restrained the NBA from collecting the newly introduced practising fee.
In a judgment, the appeal panel led by Justice Shagbor Ikyegh held that the NBA will suffer financially if the lower court’s ruling is allowed.
Justice Ikyegh further ordered that the matter be assigned to another judge and should be given accelerated hearing.
It will be recalled that the National Executive Committee of the NBA had announced the new rate of practising fees, payable from 2013, which generated ripples among lawyers who condemned the alleged 250 per cent increment compared to the fees paid in past years.
Following the announcement, five lawyers dragged the NBA before a Federal High Court, Lagos, to challenge the propriety of the increase in practicing fee payable by legal practitioners in Nigeria.