GEPLAW Marks 30 Years with a Public Lecture ‘Life Without Oil’

GEPLAW Marks 30 Years with a Public Lecture ‘Life Without Oil’

The 30th anniversary celebration was marked with a public lecture at the Muson Centre, Lagos  . . .

The event which attracted eminent members of legal profession, the business community and the media, had in attendance the  Governor of Lagos State, BabatundeFashola, SAN Former Minister for State for Petroleum and Minister for Foreign Affairs, Odein Ajumogobia, SAN; Former Attorney General of Lagos State, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, Past Legal Adviser and Company Secretary, Prof. Yinka Omorogbe, President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Okey Wali, SAN,  One-time Foreign Affairs Minister, Gen. Ike Nwachukwu (Rtd.), Chairman, Etisalat Nigeria, Hakeem-Belo Osagie amongst several other participants from the public and private sector.

The three-fold event  included a public lecture to mark the mark the firm’s 30th Anniversary, an unveiling of the book ‘Commercial Law in Nigeria’ by George Etomi, and the 60th birthday anniversary of Principal Partner, George Etomi and his brother Mike Etomi.

The Governor of Lagos State who was in attendance to honour “a brother, friend and colleague,” as he noted, spoke of some of Etomi’s special qualities.

Hear him, “If George Etomi had not become such a successful legal practitioner, one thing I know he would have done extremely well and indeed on a global scale is to play squash rackets.

“Many years back in Surulere, precisely over two and a half decades, it was a marvel to watch this graceful sportsman play this game with precision, competitiveness and expertise, that humbled his opponents, in the finest traditions of sportsmanship; of honour in victory and gracefulness in defeat that I have never seen on our land. To say that George was and remains a gentleman is really putting it mildly, he is a wonderful personality.” the Governor  commended.

“This really is the most important reason why I am here. To honour a friend and brother, deserving of it after a relationship that is almost 30 years old.”

The Governor who made a presentation on ““LIFE WITHOUT OIL,” informed participants that there was no reason why a gift of nature such as oil should bring Nigerians more distress than happiness.

He outlined scandalous events rising from our production of oil which according to him was borne more out of greed than anything else.

“The problem is not the oil, it is us. In seasons of almost one and half to two decades each, we have had one large scandal after the other which has left us as a people with our hands soiled in oil in utter embarrassment to put it mildly.

“I was a student when the N2.8 billion oil scandal broke in the early eighties. By the 1990s, the numbers were now in billions of dollars, I think about $12 billion, aka the gulf war windfall. Of course today, it is now $20 billion that we are asking to be accounted for over only a period of 19 months,”

In the Governor’s view, we could indeed rise above these and live a better life with oil.

The event ended with congratulatory notes to George Etomi & Partners (GE&P), as The Principal Partner, thanked the audience of eminent men and women from various industries and sectors of the economy.

Judith Amarachi Ugoh

Culled from The Businessday Online, 06/03/2014