The Heartbreak

By Friedrich Leonard

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Lost in the throbbing maze of music
Dancing without much ado
Reveling in the joy of love
Losing focus of tomorrow
Rigmaroling in the belief that it never ends
Until I found myself groveling in the dark
Lost without inclination
Roaming like a shepherd-less sheep
Panting and sobbing at how quickly it ended
Never really understanding that it never kicked off
I was blind to the clear signs
Hoping and praying that she’d be the one.

My joy knew no bounds when I saw her
An Angelic damsel only beheld in the dreams
Little did I know that it was too good to be real
Led on like a sheep to the slaughter
I gingerly followed like a dummy
Now I wake up to the realization that I was just a phony
Slouching, wailing and sobbing
I ask myself “is it really over?”
I heard my inner man telling me that it never kicked off
I tried to ask my lover if it was all a show
And I discovered that I was just a joke

A pastime till something better happened
A crawling snake on a rock without a mark
I’m at the river-bank and I look for words that elude me
Thoughts that drown me
I wallow in my feelings in my pitiable state
Heartbroken, I wail
Distressed and depressed, I mourn
My lover is gone like the fleeting sun
Blown away like a chaff by the whirlwind
Our love scattered like ashes
Heartbroken and feelings shattered
We grovel to our different paths
Never to meet again
Friendship not even Possible
We leave to live our new found life on separate terrains
Goodbye, My Lover
My feelings for you ever true but now buried to never rise again

My heart pounding fast and loud as the realization sink through
My Lover, I’d never see you again
My Love for her forever and totally betrayed
Promises crumble and falter
Assurances make no sense again
I promise myself to never love again
And this I intend to keep
Love is wicked and the fruit is heartbreaks
Love not and fall in love no more.

P.S. Don’t be deceived by the name, Friedrich is a proper Naija boy. I would say more about him but he wants to remain anonymous. Sad, yeah? Ohh well, don’t let that stop you from commenting and sharing with your friends.

THE TEN COMMANDMENTS OF PORTFOLIO ASSESSMENT

By Tobi Amoo

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Hello guys, I learn’t you’ll be concluding your court attachment this week. How time flies yeah! It’s countdown to your return to school, and you SHOULD start thinking about your portfolio assessment.

The portfolio assessment is an integral part of the training and examination of students at the NLS. Although it does not contribute to your grades at the bar finals, however you must score a minimum of 70% in the assessment for you to be called to the bar. In other words, if you do not meet up or failed to attend the assessment, even if you scored a First class at the exams, you would have to repeat the externship programme and wait to be called the next year. Most of you are being called ‘barrister‘ ‘the law‘ already, so I’m sure that’s not an option for you. You must therefore take the portfolio assessment very seriously.

While the portfolio consists of essays on ethical dilemma/law firm management; confidential report and Power point presentation, the following commandments will focus more on the power point.

1. Thou shall not write what you know nothing about. 

It’s not unusual for you to start calling your seniors to request for their power point slides. However, it should be a guide and template, not to be copied word for word. So if you’re using someone else’s slides, don’t copy slavishly as the panel may quiz you on any area of your slides.

Particularly the ‘skills learnt’ slide, don’t include a skill you know nothing about. For instance, if you don’t know how to move a motion (and you SHOULD!), don’t insert “I learnt how to move a motion” in your slides.

2. Thou shall not use an uncommon font.

Although some campuses allow you to bring your laptop computer and connect to the projector, majority of the campuses only require you to bring a flash drive containing your power point presentation to be inserted into a provided computer system. I know some of you are graphic artists, calligraphers, special effect gurus and all, but please keep the fonts simple and popular. The danger of using uncommon fonts in your slides is that they (the fonts) may not be installed on the provided computer system, hence converting your slides to Chinese.

Also, be careful with your font colours and backgrounds. Use black font on white background. You may also use white font on a dark background. Avoid font colours like yellow, orange, green et al.

Your fonts should also be legible in size. Don’t make the panel strain their eyes to read.

3. Thou shall not prepare a sermon

It is a brief power point presentation and not your final year thesis. Be as brief and concise as possible. You may adumbrate with your mouth if you choose (and you’re given the opportunity) but only key points should be in your slides. No stories or essays please. They’re called bullet points for a reason.

Your power point presentation should not exceed 16 slides, including the title slide and the ‘thank you‘ slide.

4. Thou shall practise with your slides.

After you have prepared and perfected your power point presentation, begin to practise with it. Don’t wait for the D-day. Familiarize yourself with the contents and slides, such that if the panel asks for a particular slide, you can produce it immediately.

Rehearse the presentation in front of your mirror or a friend, and work on areas of improvements. Make sure you can answer any question(s) that may arise from your slides.

5. Thou shall be computer literate.

If someone is preparing the power point slides for you, you’re not helping yourself. In fact, it defeats the purpose of the exercise.

If you’re not computer literate, it’s not a sin (wait a minute! In 2016?! It sure is a sin.) but please get yourself tutored. Learn the rudiments. How to plug in and eject your flashdrive. What a USB port is. How to open folders and files on the system. How to make your power point full-screen and how to activate the slideshow.

Please, challenge yourself to prepare the slides by yourself. You will be better for it.

6. Thou shall not use a virus infected flashdrive.

I’m sure you know how Law school is tough on schedule. They hardly reschedule students for portfolio assessment. You don’t want to be the one that infected the school’s computer with virus. You also don’t want to open your flash drive in front of the panel to see files-turned-shortcuts because of virus.

Take precautions to ensure your file is properly saved on the flash drive, and the flash drive is virus free. I would also suggest you borrow a friend’s flash drive, save your presentation on it too and take it along as backup.

7. Thou shall not miss your scheduled time.

Each student will be scheduled by date, time and venue and the schedule will be published for everyone. Make sure you note your date, time and before which panel you’re appearing.

Except for health reasons (for which you must call your mentor or SRC President ASAP) please don’t miss your scheduled time. If you miss it, not that you may not be rescheduled, but it will cost you precious time going from office to office to plead for reschedule.

8. Thou shall dress well

The shortest way to say this is to say: dress like you would for the dinner.

Gentlemen, wear your black suits please.

9. Thou shall bring along all required documents

This is the reason why it’s called a portfolio. Your portfolio should have your court and law firm log books; your essays on ethical dilemma and law firm management; your assessment of court and law firm; and a confidential report to be filled by your law firm. Make sure to go for the presentation with all of them for submission. They have their marks too.

Importantly, please note that the confidential report by your law firm must be SEALED. It’s natural for you to be curious about how you were accesses by your law firm but if it was given to you sealed, please DO NOT unseal it, as it may be rejected. If your law firm gives you the report unsealed, please make sure to seal it before returning to school.

10. Thou shall be bold

The panel consists of two members – 1 NLS lecturer and 1 independent (private practitioner) member. They will throw questions at you from both your slides and all areas of law.

Be calm and be bold. Even when you don’t know the answer, show confidence. Note that I did not say ‘arrogance’. Be polite but be bold.

Make sure you don’t allow yourself to be unnecessary ruffled. It’s not unusual to see students breakdown in tears especially when they cannot answer the questions thrown at them.

I will be willing to share my essays and slides as template. If you need, write me at iamtobiamoo@gmail.com with the subjectRequest for Portfolio Assessment Template“.

Also, if you have question(s) you want me to address on this blog, send it to my e-mail address above.

hey guys, I’m sure you are wondering if Tobi Amoo has taken over the blog or whether Ilemona is strictly for Nigerian Law School Students. NO, and NOPE! Ilemona is “randomly random” (yea, you can roll your eyes at that), and it’s why we are featuring these special editions for the Law School Students. And don’t you worry, for those who think Law is boring (seriously, where are you from ø_ø?)keep watching this space something is coming soon.For the Law School Students, if you missed the former editions click here and hereDON’T FORGET TO SHARE, YOU JUST MIGHT BE HELPING SOMEONE WHO WILL SAVE YOUR BUTT IN THE NEAREST FUTURE.

How to overcome the fear of Barphobia

Barphobia -the fear of bar finals

By Tobi Amoo.

This article is only for a set of people. If you’re not concerned you may not bother reading. This is for those who are scared out of their wits about bar finals; those that have given up or about to give up on the bar final exams. So if you’re very confident about your preparation and capability to ace the bar finals, you may exit your browser now.

Let me lay a very important foundation here: There is no person who has gone through the NLS that was never scared at one point or the other. Just ask around. So if you’re scared, you’re not weird. But you can overcome it!

Here are some tips I believe will help you win the war against that monster called ‘Fear’.

  1. Be interested

I know some of you were coerced, pressurized or enticed to study Law. I know some of you can’t wait to finish Law school and do something ‘more meaningful’ with your life. But let’s forget all that for now please. The fact is you’re here already and what is worth doing, is worth doing excellently.

If you want to overcome the fear, you’ve got love reading the texts. Don’t make reading a chore. Making learning fun so in the the process it doesn’t look difficult. For guys, you know how you read up on the football leagues, the rankings, transfers, managers/coaches and all. How you keenly follow Goals.com and know everything happening in the English and European leagues. For ladies, you know how you follow up on channel E and the kardashians or for some others Bellanaija.com.

I could go on and on but I’m sure you get the drift. Can you analyse Interlocutory injunctions like you would the English league? Do you know Corporate Law procedures like you know all the members of the Kardashian family and how many times they’ve divorced and re-married?

In short, develop interest for the course outline and you will no longer fear it.

  1. Use the elevator over and over again.

Okay that’s only a metaphor. You know how you were scared the first time you entered an elevator. How your heart was beating faster than a jet. And then the second time, you were still scared but not like the first. Then the more times you used it, the less you got scared.

If you’re scared of (or having issues with) a topic, read it again and again and again. If you scared of (or having issues with) a draft, practice it again and again and again.

The more you have contact with it, the more it gets de-mystified. Surround yourself with Law school stuffs – notes, texts, drafts, pasts questions and all. The trick is that your body will get more relaxed around them.

  1. Run Flee from negative people.

If you have reading pals or roommates who are always talking about how impossible it is to have a First Class or how miraculous it is to ‘just have a pass and go’, please flee from them. Honestly, these people will sap your energy. Avoid having such conversations with them.

They tell you stories of people that ‘read for Africa’ and still failed but they won’t talk about guys that ‘read for Nigeria’ and had a 1st or a 2:1. They tell you nobody can learn all the RPC rules and all those fable tales.

I don’t blame them actually, because they most likely have been infected by some other negative people either from previous sets or otherwise. But if your friend (even your brother) has a flu, you don’t have a duty to contact same from the person. So, run…no FLEE from them.

  1. The end justifies the means

The most important thing is that you deliver in the exams hall. Don’t let anybody despise your study method.

Whether you have to sing it like a nursery rhyme or you have to write it over and over again. Whether you have to learn it in bits or you have to explain the principle to yourself in your local language. Whether you have to highlight your text like a lady applying eye shadow pencil or you have to learn it in a systematic way. Once it works for you, that’s all that matters.

Don’t allow somebody tell you that’s not a good way to work. By the way, Excuse me! That person hasn’t passed the bar finals yet. So if he has another method. Fine. But he can’t breathe it down your throat.

In short, be comfortable with your style.

  1. Talk to lawyers

They were once in Law school. They had the fears you have (some even worse). Talk to them about your fears. They will encourage you and share their testimonies with you. They can also help with any principles you are having issues with.

However, if you come in contact with a lawyer that tells you it’s very okay to ‘just have a PASS and go’ please apply no. 3 above.

  1. Look around. Look everywhere.

All over the nooks and crannies of this country, from North to south and from East to West, there are lawyers everywhere. Lawyers that passed through the same Nigerian Law School (there’s only one in Nigeria).

If everyone of them could pass, then why not you?

To the best of my knowledge, there is no Law school set that has ever recorded as much as a 50% fail record. In other words, in every set, at least half (and usually more) always record a pass degree (1st, 2:1, 2:2, Pass). So if you’re scared, just look around – from your village, neighborhood, church, family et al – all the lawyers you see and tell yourself “If they could pass, I can too”.

Look at people that went through Law school in more difficult circumstances (married women, pregnant woman, aged people, business men et al) and still passed. Let that encourage you.

Don’t look at people that failed. Look at folks that passed.

  1. Pray

This is res ipsa. I need not say more on it. PRAY!

I believe you can make it. Yes YOU! You can ace the exams.

(Additional notes by ayo)

  1. Please and please read very well during this externship (at least try and cover the 14 weeks previously taught) trust me it will go a long way, devote at least 4 hours a day. failure to do that will leave you overwhelmed during the third term in school.
  2. Also play a little, all work and no play they say makes jack a dull boy, however in law school it will make Jack go mad.
  3. Know yourself and your strengths, just because Tamedu  reads 24 hours per day does not mean you have that grace, don’t deceive yourself.
  4. Don’t let those ‘i too know’ intimidate you, most of the time you know more.
  5. Rest, Sleep and eat it will help you in the end.

One more thing before i forget, attend revision classes its very very IMPORTANT it will help you know how to answer questions, don’t mind those that skip it and view it as a complete waste of time.

 Authors Note: in case you didn’t know or you were wondering what gives him the right to dole out advice; Tobi Amoo graduated with a first class in the Nigerian Law School in 2015. Yup! that certifies him, don’t you think ?

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My NLS Experience

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by Oluwatobi Amoo

Truth is the Nigerian law school is better experienced than imagined.

The Wait

I didn’t really celebrate my LL.B that much, because I was waiting for the dear Law school. I kept telling everybody that wanted me to ‘wash’ the convocation for them “Don’t worry. We’ll do correct washing at call to bar”. I was excited about Law School not because i’m bookish or like school, but because I wanted to get it over with as quick as possible. The best way to achieve that was for the law school programme to come and go sharp-sharp. Looking back with hindsight, I should have enjoyed the waiting period while it lasted, for there were times at NLS when I wished I could go back to that waiting period.

Posting.

I wanted Abuja campus by all means. I had prayed and prayed and prayed, with fasting and I was so confident i’ll be posted to the headquarters. I chose Abuja, Enugu, Lagos & Yenegoa in that order. My mental, emotional and all kinda preparation was for Abuja campus.

Waiting for the posting was like a politician waiting for an Election result. We were to resume on Monday and as at Saturday afternoon we hadn’t known where we going to spend the next one year. Cut-Long-Story-Short I was posted to Kano campus. What???!!!! Ka-what??? I didn’t choose it. How on earth. I didn’t believe my eyes. I refreshed the page and zoomed in to be sure I wasn’t checking someone else’s. Anyways, the son of man went to the Bagauda, Kano campus.

Resumption.

After all the registration procedures that entailed a lot of queues and photocopies and all, we had orientation and got the almighty code of conduct.

Fast-forward to second week in class. Giants of intimidation began to arise. Is it guys that had read half the syllabus before we resumed? Is it men who had worked years as court clerks? Or people that could read 7 hours at a stretch without blinking? Or First Class degree holders? All of them were in the same class with me. *Sighs*. Thankfully, the intimidation didn’t last long. At least for yours truly.

Initially, the classes were interesting…felt like a real Post-Graduate class and all…but by week 5 it wasn’t funny anymore. the avalanche of new knowledge to chop was just too much. It was like exposing someone who was under a shower to the furious highly pressurized water coming out of the fireman’s hose.

Classes became really demanding, especially for those of us who wanted to keep up. At a point, I decided to move at my pace – not comparing myself with any other person – and it made so much sense. I also had great roomies and intellectual friends that helped make learning fun.

Chapel of Favour (chaplain & members) helped in no small measure. It was a shedding point of some sort. Anytime I was overwhelmed with the work volume, and I always was, the chapel was a place of solace, encouragement and receiving spiritual strength. Of course, I was very active in church here and there upandan.

Externship

It felt like getting freedom from a prison sentence. I knew I still had to read and all, but at least it’ll be from home. Free from the substandard maami food. Plus I got to see in practice all the theoretical stuff we had been doing in class which made reading and assimilation easier. I also got to (re) interact with other colleagues from other campuses and share notes and all. And got to watch movies on weekends. (Don’t Try it at Home if your faith doesn’t carry you o. LOL!).

Exams.

Almighty bar finals came and went. YaaaY we passed.

*whispers* The bar finals is kinda overrated jor. *Don’t tell anyone I said so*

get-excited-i-m-done-law-school

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Choices

By Oluwaseun I have just started to realise that life is all about choices. Even when we fail to make a choice, we are still choosing something. For a long while i have been hiding in the shadows, been walking on the side lines never choosing to live because i was scared. I was scared […]

I’m Sorry (2)

**Incase you missed it, read I’m Sorry (1)  here  **

I should stop here and say what I really want. I should say why I’m really scared.

It’s because I remember what the anonymous writer said in the book; that it will be difficult- i’m pretty sure he used the word “impossible”-for those who have been saved and know the truth, who then fall away, to be saved again.

You see it right? That sounds just like me. I knew too much to give it all up.

But something deep within me says it’s still possible. That I’m not completely lost. What I don’t know is, ‘how?’ How do I retrace my steps?

With this emptiness I’ve felt for so long, how do I know I’m not just playing religion and only going through the motions? And then become the fulfillment of the verse that talks about the “gift of God” which is given without repentance; how do I know all my talk and actions isn’t just the gift of God given without repentance but I’m empty on the inside just like Saul?

So this is what I’m asking:

Please forgive me.

Please don’t take that assurance from me.

Don’t take away your grace; I know I’m undeserving of it.

Don’t take any of it away. Help me to feel you again, and see you.

To know you like I used to and even beyond that.

And help me to love you above everything else.

I may have to do the chasing this time, but of course, you will do the catching because it’s what you do and it’s the only way I could ever reach you.

I don’t know how, I really don’t. I’m really helpless and clueless but I know I don’t want to draw back to perdition. Not ever again.

I know I don’t need to work for Grace (it won’t be Grace if we had to).

I just feel I need to show you I mean what I say. But these words are only empty except you help me or I may just find myself going in circles again. I tried, and it took me a while to figure this out but I can’t save myself.

So I’m letting go.

I’ve stopped struggling.

Please reach your hands into this tiny space I’ve wedged myself in and save me… from myself.

I still don’t feel the peace flooding my soul. Not yet.

But I think I feel the release. Or maybe I don’t.

Then, I don’t expect anything dramatic.

But it’s okay. It’s okay if I don’t feel anything now, as long as the assurance comes eventually.

And it doesn’t matter how long, I’m going to keep chasing till it’s done.

 

Endless love

I want that endless love
The kind that burns
Burns very bright
I want that endless love
The one that is both
Pain and pleasure
Both pleasure and pain
I want that endless love
The kind that is so intense
So deeply intense
I can’t seem to breathe
I want that endless love
The kind that lasts
And lasts forever.
endlesslove