Femi Falana, human rights lawyer and Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), has called on lawyers to be "very careful" when receiving payment from politicians for services offered.

He stated this at the 15th edition of the Chief Gani Fawehinmi Annual Lecture/Symposium organised by the Nigerian Bar Association (Ikeja branch) on Tuesday at the Macke Hall, Airport Hotel, Ikeja in Lagos State.

According to Falana, politicians must pay lawyers handling their cases from their pockets and not from the public treasury.

He stated that the lawyers might "run into trouble" with security agencies, if they are not careful.

“I am warning senior lawyers to be very careful with respect to charges. You must ensure that the litigant is paying you from his or pocket. The moment you allow a Governor or President of the country or anybody for that matter to dip his or her hand to public treasury, you might run into trouble because security agencies have the power to investigate the sources of your income," he said.

Also commenting on the case of Walter Onnoghen, the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Falana advised the government to withdraw the charges against him because there is a judgment from the Court of Appeal that before you can arraign a judicial officer in Nigeria, he must have been investigated by the National Judicial Council.

The theme of the event was 'Securing the Independence of INEC — A Panacea for a Free, Fair and Credible Elections in Nigeria'. It was attended by Professor Akin Oyebode, former Vice Chancellor of University of Ado-Ekiti, who was the guest speaker; Mike Iginni, the INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner (Akwa Ibom); Austin Alegeh (SAN), former NBA President; Uwemedimo Nwoko, Attorney General/Commissioner for Justice (Akwa Ibom); Oba Semiu Orimadegun Kasali, the Adeboruwa of Igbogbo, among others.

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