Michaela Edwina Swallow Becomes Chair of West African Bar Association Transition Committee

By Amin Kef (Ranger)

The result oriented and charismatic President of the Sierra Leone Bar Association (SLBA), Michaela Eddinia Swallow, has ascended a significant milestone in her legal career when she was recently appointed as the Chairperson for the Transition Committee within the West African Bar Association (WABA).

Her appointment materialized during a two-day WABA conference on the theme: “Promoting Democratic Consolidation through the Respect of the Rule of Law and Human Rights: Harnessing the Influence of Bar Associations.”

Worthy of note is that the two day WABA Conference was convened in order to strengthen WABA’s operations, make attendees feel at home in the Secretariat of WABA and facilitate the election of  a fresh executive leadership.

Commendably, the gathering achieved the dual purpose of serving as WABA’s Annual General Meeting and as an apt platform to address the impediments that are deeply eating into the fabric of the  Rule of Law and Human Rights within the region. However,  a pivotal decision emerged from the conference, mandating the deferment of executive elections and the establishment of a Transition Committee.

The Transition Committee, which includes distinguished delegates from Bar Associations spanning the three West African regions – Anglophone, Francophone, and Luxophone has the responsibility of meticulously scrutinizing the WABA constitution and overseeing the impending appointment of new executive members, slated for the initial quarter of 2024.

Through a unanimous consensus, Madam Michaela Eddinia Swallow, President of the Sierra Leone Bar Association, was made the Chairperson of the West African Bar Association Transition Committee.

Michaela’s appointment was not surprising as her impeccable track record as a venerable leader in the realm of legal affairs both at home and on the global stage speaks volumes. As the President of the SLBA, her contributions to the consolidation of peace and democracy, particularly in the context of the recently concluded multi-tier elections, have been nothing short of invaluable. These efforts, spearheaded in collaboration with the Commonwealth-sponsored National Peace Pledge Committee, have been pivotal in ensuring the conduct of peaceful, equitable and transparent elections.

Out of Sierra Leone, Madam Swallow’s influence on the international arena is solid. Her uncontested election as a distinguished member of the esteemed Governing Council of the Commonwealth Lawyers Association speaks volume of her reputation and her standing as a highly regarded figure amongst the judges of the ECOWAS Court of Justice cements her prominence.

Madam Michaela Eddinia Swallow’s elevation to the Chairpersonship of the West African Bar Association Transition Committee serves as a testament to the revival of hope, renewed vigor and progress within the West African legal fraternity.


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