• Retirement from the legal profession
• He exonerated Olanipekun and said that the company took the necessary measures by email
• Decides to get involved in community social work with NGOs
A partner at law firm Wole Olanipekun SAN & Co, Adekunbi Ogunde, has resigned from the law firm, citing endless controversy over an email he sent to SAIPEM Contracting Nigeria Ltd for a legal letter saying he had decided to leave the law.
She added that from now on she will volunteer with selected NGOs in community and social work.
The information is from Ogunde in a statement signed by her and made available on Wednesday.
She also said she is resigning because she is at the center of the controversy and the avoidable collateral damage that results from her one-page email without proper inquiries.
The statement is captioned: "Re: My email correspondence dated June 20, 2022 and subsequent events."
The fierce lawyer also explained that in the meantime she will take the necessary courses to better prepare herself to face professional and life issues.
According to his statement, after some time and in consultation with his parents, older colleagues and supporters, he will return to practicing law.
Ogunde stirred up the hornet's nest on June 20 when he unilaterally sent an email to Saipem requesting a legal opinion from the contractor, claiming that the founder of Wole Olanipekun & Co wanted more "impact" with the judges of all courts.
But the Chambers of Odein Ajumogobia are the ones that watch over Saipem's legal mandate.
A professional misconduct complaint against Ogunde was subsequently filed with the Legal Professionals Privilege Committee (LPPC), while Nigerian Lawyers Association (NBA) President Olumide Akpata urged the head of the Benchers Corps (BoB) ), Wole Olanipekun (SAN), to resign his position. . claiming that Ogunde is from his law firm.
But Olanipekun hit back, saying that the Body of Benchers does not interfere with LPPC proceedings.
The legal luminary also said that the BoB does not influence the outcome of matters submitted to the LPPC.
Olanipekun said: “The Benchers Corps does not and will not interfere with any proceeding or outcome of any proceeding before the LPPC.
“It is important to note that the LPPC is not a way to deal with alleged enemies or file complaints against other lawyers on personal matters.
"LPDC's decision is known as the Order, and any appeal against the Order goes directly to the Supreme Court."
Here is the full text of Adekunbi Ogunde's statement:
“The email I sent to Saipem SPA (“Saipem”) on June 20, 2022 has been the subject of discussion, debate and hate speech among lawyers and the general public on various social media platforms for several weeks.
“My June 27, 2022 public statement was intended to express remorse for the distress caused by the email to Ajumogobia & Okeke, my firm Wole Olanipekun & Co. and/or law firm employees were aware of the content or delivery of my email or consented to the content or delivery and, in the opinion of some people, did not serve the purpose either.
“Since making this public statement, like everyone else, I have read online a complaint filed against me by the First Vice President of the Nigerian Bar Association to the Legal Professionals Disciplinary Committee and the subsequent letter to the founding partner of my firm , Chief Wole Olanipekun SAN, OFR, who was due to resign as Chairman of the Deputy Corps.
"I cannot deny the fact that I am at the center of any problem, major or minor, that has arisen from said email.
It may seem that even Wole Olanipekun & Co. ni have taken concrete steps to improve the impact of email through disciplining, educating, reforming, and rehabilitating myself.
"I would like to point out that the company took these steps but did not feel that its actions should receive media attention.
“Unfortunately, the matter has now become quite complicated and has affected not only me psychologically, but also Wole Olanipekun & Co. and my family. It has generated bad blood and, to my great pain, has completely embarrassed the founding partner of the company. , the innocent and dignified Chief Wole Olanipekun SAN, OFR, and everyone else in the company.
"As the author of all of this, I have consulted with my family and company, and after thorough and thorough investigation of all facets of this hydra head issue, I have decided to take the following steps:
1. I will take a leave of absence from practicing law and do community and social volunteer work with selected NGOs.
2. I will also take the necessary courses during this time to better prepare myself to face life and work problems.
3. I will return to legal practice after a while, in consultation with my parents, older colleagues and supporters.
This declaration is issued to allow me to transition into the next phase of my life. I will not make any more public statements.
"Thank you to everyone who helped me through this difficult time, especially my parents, partners and employees of Wole Olanipekun & Co., my friends and friends of my parents.
God bless you all.
oh idealRemember that the Rivers State government chose to indict Saipem on $130 million fraud charges.
But although he knew that the Odein Ajumogobia SAN law firm was handling the matter, Ogunde urged SAIPEM to consider hiring Olanipekun & Co, adding that the BOB president had more "influence" over judges in all courts.
Ajumogobia responded to the development in a letter to Olanipekun, saying that the change violated essential mandatory rules.
But Olanipekun apologized to Ajumogobia, saying that he never approved the email sent by Ogunde.
Ogunde, whose responsibility is to secure business for the company, explained the problem in a statement, admitting that he sent the email "without the consent or knowledge of the company's founding partner or managing partner, Mr. Cabra Olanipekun SAN."
He then said: “I found out about the Saipem matter through an online article and unilaterally contacted Saipem to stop taking said matter, which I was unaware of, to the courts.
“My limited knowledge in the field of litigation came to light because, if I had asked others familiar with recent developments in litigation circles, they would have told me that the matter between Saipem and the Rivers State government would have been resolved. resolved from the court. two (2) months prior to my email dated June 20, 2022. Therefore, at the time of writing this email, there is no such matter pending in court.
Ogunde further recanted his testimony by stating that Olanipekun had influence over the judges.
She said: “I made certain negligent statements and conclusions in my June 20, 2022 email that could easily be construed as allowing the company to help give Saipem an advantage in court.
"Therefore, I must withdraw such representations and categorically state that since I joined the company in December 2021, I have never seen anyone at the company (including its founding partners and managers) engage in any harmful or unethical practices." that suggests that the company may somehow "influence" judicial decisions through improper means.
"My June 20, 2022 email (albeit effusively written, but written in good faith and selflessly) resonates greatly with people I hold dear and continue to love dearly: the firm's founding partner, Chief Wole by Olanipekun SAN, OFR, the managing partner of the company, Mr. Bode Olanipekun SAN, and my dear parents, Mr. Oluwemimo Ogunde SAN and Mrs. Yinka Ogunde.
"To remedy this, I personally contacted H.Odein Ajumogobia, SAN, OFR, via email and WhatsApp messages sent to Silk Learn on June 24, 2022, to apologize to him for this misjudgment."
Ogunde also revealed that along with the company's apology, his father, who is also a senior lawyer, reached out to Ajumogobia to apologize on his behalf.