Africa Legal’s Tom Pearson opens the interview by asking Yindi about her Nigerian heritage and, she explains, that while her parents left West Africa before she was born, her ties with extended family are still strong.
Much of Yindi’s compliance and investigations work focuses on Nigeria and South Africa but, she says, the outbreak of the pandemic means travelling to meet clients has become impossible - nevertheless, out of necessity, the transition to online meetings is evolving.
Yindi sits on Baker McKenzie’s Global Africa Strategy Steering Committee which encompasses offices in Casablanca, Cairo and Johannesburg. With other members of the committee she is responsible for the firm’s Africa strategy and advises clients who are foreign international investors, global corporates, domestic companies and sovereign states working, or looking to invest, in Africa.
Baker McKenzie’s ambition, she adds, is to be the global law firm of choice in Africa. “While we don’t have offices everywhere our ways of working means we are able to support clients all over the continent,” she adds.
Yindi has experience in corporate crime and investigations and Tom asks her about how the pandemic has impacted this as businesses have moved online in the Covid-world.
“A ‘down’ economy can create opportunities for fraud,” Yindi explains, “something that is being seen in the UK where there has been a hike in fraud, for example counterfeit Covid-19 testing kits, non-existent testing schemes and fake PPE.”
Later in the interview Yindi talks about her pro bono work and how this has given career depth - this includes a focus on refugee rights and working with the United Nations’ refugee agency, UNHCR.
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