Dear respected Senior Advocates of Nigeria, learned seniors and distinguished colleagues, from the bottom of my heart, I thank you.
Congressman John Lewis, before his passing, wrote: “Democracy is not a state, it is an act.” – and what he meant, was that democracy is not guaranteed. It is only as strong as our willingness to fight for it, to guard it, and never take it for granted. And protecting our democracy takes struggle. It takes sacrifice; but there is joy in it, and there is progress, because we, the people, have the power to build a better future. Today, you, the people of the Nigerian Bar Association stood up to democratically elect new leadership in a responsible manner and you chose me, as your 1st Vice President with 21, 000 votes! I am still in awe!
You stayed awake from the midnight of 16th July, 2022 to the midnight of 17th July, 2022 just to ensure that you vote in the right persons to lead the bar. Thank you for staying up — thank you, for turning out in record numbers to make your voices heard.
To my campaign DG, Ms Anne Agi and her assistant (Mr. Itema Johnnie aka “Obama”), my campaign team, friends and volunteers, this extraordinary team — thank you for making this victory possible.
To FIDA NIGERIA and all her members, I say a very big THANK YOU. You came out enmasse for me, your support and love still astounds me. How can I thank you enough?
To my closest friends who showed me that there were friends indeed with rheir words and actions, I can never forget your kind deeds and show of love. God bless you.
To my opponents, Messrs. Yakubu Bawa and Liman Salihu, thank you for exhibiting the sport man’s spirit. I am deeply impressed with your zeal to serve the Bar and I appreciate you both. Remember that we are all stakeholders in our profession and your suggestions to the incoming administration will help us build a greater Bar. Thank you for your call of congratulations, Mr. Bawa.
To the members of the ECNBA who have worked tirelessly to ensure a seamless voting process — our Association owes you a debt of gratitude. You protected the integrity of the process. You made us proud.
To my dear husband who has been so supportive through this entire journey, I cannot thank you enough. Your love and support has been my strength. Thank you so much.
Dear colleagues, no matter who you voted for, I will strive to be the 1st Vice President you desire – loyal, honest, and prepared, waking up every day thinking of members of the Bar. Now is when the real work begins. The hard work. The necessary work. The good work. The essential work, to ensure that the welfare of members of the Bar is protected, to speak up for the common people of Nigeria and to insist on the rule of law. I will need your help to successfully represent you.
It is indeed the honour and privilege of my life to be able to say thank you to all of our supporters and organizers, for electing me as your next 1st Vice President.
God bless you all.
LINDA ROSE BALA
1ST VICE PRESIDENT ELECT