Tuma Adama-Gento Jabbi Declares as President of Bar Association

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By Foday Moriba Conteh

In a momentous declaration ceremony held at the New Brookfields Hotel in Freetown on April 14, 2024, Tuma Adama-Gento Jabbi, a prominent legal practitioner and daughter of the renowned constitutional lawyer Dr. Bu-Buakei Jabbi, announced her candidacy for the presidency of the Sierra Leone Bar Association (SLBA). The event marked a significant milestone in the upcoming SLBA presidential election scheduled for May 18, 2024.

Under the theme: “Raise The Bar,” Tuma Adama Jabbi outlined her vision for the SLBA presidency, focusing on the pillars of Standards, Empowerment and Welfare. Her campaign promises to elevate the standards within the legal profession, empower legal practitioners, and address welfare concerns for members of the Bar.

During her candidacy announcement, Tuma Adama Jabbi emphasized her deep-rooted commitment to the legal profession, drawing inspiration from her father’s legacy and her own fourteen years of experience as a legal practitioner. She highlighted her contributions to legal education, including the introduction of the Tax/Revenue Law module at Fourah Bay College in 2014, which has impacted hundreds of students.

Central to her vision is the concept of “Standards, Empowerment and Welfare” (#SEW), which she believes are interconnected and essential for the advancement of the legal profession in Sierra Leone. Tuma Adama Jabbi debunked the myth that pursuing high ethical standards and advancing human rights are mutually exclusive, asserting that the SLBA can simultaneously elevate standards while defending constitutionalism and human rights.

She outlined concrete plans to raise standards within the legal profession, including the introduction of clerkships as part of pupillage to provide support for Judges and Senior Magistrates. Also, she  proposed the operationalization of the Legal Practitioner’s Privileges Committee to recognize deserving senior advocates, thereby fostering respect for the legal profession.

Furthermore, Bar Association Presidential aspirant stressed the importance of empowerment, advocating for continuous legal education (CLE) and scholarship opportunities to capacitate legal practitioners in various areas of law. She expressed her commitment to exploring internship opportunities with international bodies to broaden the exposure of SLBA members to international legal practice.

Addressing welfare concerns, Tuma Adama Jabbi acknowledged the need for a permanent Bar Secretariat and pledged to secure suitable land for its construction. She also proposed the establishment of a private pension scheme in collaboration with NASSIT to support retired members of the Bar, emphasizing the importance of collective action and solidarity within the legal fraternity.

In conclusion, Tuma Adama-Gento Jabbi humbly appealed for support from SLBA members, promising to build upon the progress made under the outgoing President’s leadership and lead the Association towards a future where it will serve as a beacon of hope, positive change, and justice for all.

During the declaration ceremony, various personalities, including legal professionals and students, gave their enthusiastic support to Tuma-Gento Jabbi Kamara’s candidacy, praising her leadership skills and deep understanding of Sierra Leone’s legal challenges.

Emmanuel Sahr Tondoneh, a lawyer and respected member of the Sierra Leone Bar Association, endorsed her fervently, highlighting her vision for mentoring the next generation and promoting diversity within the legal community.

Former Sierra Leone Law School President, Edi Fouga-Malusa Mansaray, also confidently endorsed Tuma-Gento Jabbi Kamara, citing her open-door policy and warm personality as key qualities for leading inclusively.

Barrister Edith Chaytor pledged her support, recounting Tuma’s empathy and assistance during a personal struggle at the Sierra Leone Law School.

A student shared a touching moment when Tuma offered financial assistance for surgery, demonstrating her caring nature and suitability for leadership.

Another student expressed admiration for Tuma’s inspirational role, believing her character could drive significant change in any position she holds.

Lawyer Yusuf Keketoma Sandy chaired the programme and in his opening statement pointed out that the coming forward of an illustrious personality in the person of Tuma-Gento Jabbi Kamara to contest for the Presidency of the Sierra Leone Bar Association is indeed very welcoming , marks a new dawn and must be embraced by members of the Association. He maintained that the aspiring candidate has all what it takes to revolutionize the Association further she possesses the requisite credentials laced with years of wealth of experience stressing that members must made an informed choice devoid of political motivations in order to position the Bar to take its rightful place within the nation.

It must be noted that the announcement of Tuma Adama-Gento Jabbi’s candidacy has definitely set the stage for a spirited campaign leading up to the SLBA Presidential election, with the strong conviction that her vision to “Raise The Bar” will loudly resonate among legal practitioners across Sierra Leone.


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