Careers In ‘Litigation’ For Private Legal Practitioners And The JUSUN’s Strike Action: A ‘Cause’ Rather Than A ‘Curse’!

Litigation relates to resolving legal issues with the aid of or by resorting to court of law. The court of law now on indefinite action due to the declared strike action by the Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria-herein after referred to as JUSUN- and as a result of the strike action, some persons with due respect to them, have embarked on using derogatory statements against private legal practitioners that chose their career in litigation, the situation which is likely to discourage any private legal practitioner who has chosen his career in the litigation. This paper is much more with the aim of encouraging private legal practitioners who have chosen their career in the litigation (especially the young lawyers) and for them not to be deterred from their focus! They must be determined in their ambitions and to remain determined. More so, the time of the strike action even as indefinite as it is, has its own time which would soon pass, by God’s intervention!

Litigation cuts across all fields of law-civil and criminal. This is because the court of law is prescribed by various laws and access to court of law by any person is constitutionally guaranteed, hence, the need to resort to court of law for either adjudication or judicial order or judicial interpretation of laws. The need for litigation in the administration of justice system cannot also be overemphasized. More so, the provision of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria is clear on the right of every person to represent himself or by a counsel of his choice. Therefore, no matter how the system upgrades, litigation cannot be annihilated! The court being the last hope of the common man also necessitates the need for litigation in our administration of justice system. Furthermore, the existence of courts of law as established by the Constitution and various laws establishing courts of law show clearly the need for litigation.

Furthermore, there are many career opportunities emanating from litigation practices. For instance, being a Magistrate or Area Court Judge or Customary Court Judge upon call to bar. Also, from 10 years at the bar, appointment as either the attorney-general of the federation or of a State or as a Judge of High Court are possible or becoming a Senior Advocate of Nigeria. Furthermore, there are many ways of making money in litigation practices apart from ‘appearance fee’ contrary to some wrong thoughts that litigation practitioners are always concerned about ‘appearance fee’ and as if they would not survive this JUSUN’s strike period without the appearance fee! Appearance fee is just one among other ways of making money in the litigation practices. Also, before 10 years at the bar, being in litigation is profitable if the patience and sacrifices could be maintained!

Also, litigation involves rule of law, rule of practice and some conventions of practice. A lawyer who is determined to go into a career in litigation must be determined and not allow anything to distract or deter him! The JUSUN’s strike would definitely be over as soon as possible! My humble advice to private legal practitioners especially the young lawyers is for them to remain firm with their determination in litigation! Very soon, all shall be well!

In conclusion, I must state that litigation remains my passion and my career in the legal profession through litigation remains a great determination for me! These are my kind advice for young lawyers and private lawyers generally in litigation practices! Therefore, litigation should be seen as a ‘cause’ rather than a ‘curse’!



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