Happy Independence Anniversary, Nigeria (we hope we’re not late to the party), and Happy Anniversary to Legal Pages. This edition of the Law Student of the Month is a very special one. We feature Victoria Edema, a student at Osun State University. She speaks to us about her Leadership experience and the recently enacted Police Act. Enjoy the full interview below.
- Hello, can we meet you?
Hi, I am Victoria Oluwatosin Edema, a Christian, a 300 level Law student at Osun State University. I am currently the Vice President of Yusuf Ali’s Liberty Chambers, one of the leading chambers in my college. Also, I am the head of media in the Intellectual Property Law Club, UNIOSUN. Additionally, I am the Director of Research at ADR society, UNIOSUN. Asides being a law student, I am a social media manager, a voiceover artist, a video content creator, or a moderator.
- Has it always been law?
No… Lol. I was caught in between two careers. On the one hand, I had this passion for law, and on the other hand, I wanted to be on the television, to be a journalist. I was the news-gatherer of the Press Club in my Secondary School, and a very active member of the Debating Society. I always had a way around every clash.
- What area(s) of law interest you the most, and why?
Intellectual Property Law! I love the fact that as a creative, your work can be protected, and you don’t have to beg to earn credits for your work.
- Kindly run us through your leadership experience as an undergraduate. How have you been shaped by these experiences?
I served as an Editor-in-chief at RCF, Ifetedo chapter. Besides, I am currently serving as the Vice President at Yusuf Ali’s Liberty Chambers; the Director of Media, Intellectual Property Law Club, Osun State University; the Director of Research, ADR Society UNIOSUN; and Social Media Manager at Commercially Aware.
As a leader, your following is very important because certain times you don’t have it all together, you need to follow others as well. I have had to work with different people, take courses on leadership and teamwork skills, and carried every person along, even the non-responsive ones. So, I have learned teamwork, tolerance, the ability to work under pressure, decision-making, and capacity building.
- What are the major challenges faced by the average law students? Are there any ways forward?
I would say lack of awareness. Some people say, “What you don’t know doesn’t kill you,” which I think should be the other way round, “What you don’t know will limit you.” A solution to this is ‘Commercial Awareness.’ The truth is when you know something, a greater percentage of the problem is solved. Therefore, gain knowledge in everything you do, it won’t hurt you.
- Tell us about your role model, if any.
My role model is my mother, Temitope Bolade Edema (late). She lived a short but very impactful life. Nobody met her without getting impacted by her. She would always tell me to do all I can to make an impact, even if it’s a single thing I do. She laid a strong foundation for every other person in my life to build on.
- What else, if not law?
That would be Social media Management and video content creation.
- What’s your take on the recently signed Police Act? Do you think it’s a step in the right direction?
The new Police Act 2020 provides for a more effective and well-organized police force driven by the principles of transparency and accountability in its operations and management of its resources. I have read the summary of the Act, and in my opinion, Nigerians should try to read the Act to further understand the laws. I believe this will guide our perception of the law’s enforcement.
I found Section 66(1) of the Police Act 2020 very interesting, which, in summary, states that ONLY a Police Officer who is a LEGAL PRACTITIONER can prosecute. However, after doing a proper study of the Act itself and not the summary, I figured that what the summary reads, which everyone knows, is very different from what the actual section means.
- Do you have any long term goals mapped out? How do you intend to achieve them?
I intend to start an Intellectual Property Community for the purpose of publicising intellectual property knowledge in an easily accessible and simplified form to the world, most especially non-legal personnel.
I have started studying more about the area of law, following practitioners in that field, and gathering fellow law students of like passion for having a strong vision board.
- Any final words?
I would advise everyone to adopt “proper awareness, proper networking, proper communication, and proper planning.” Basically, add the word “proper” to every good skill you have as a law student, and we’ll see at the top.