FULL LIST: Body of Benchers Ignores Akpata’s Nomination, Appoints Okutepa SAN, Arthur Obi Okafor SAN, Kanu Agabi SAN, others as BoB Members

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The outgoing Chairman of Body of Benchers, Chief Olanipeku SAN has announced the Appointment of honorary members of the Body and new Life members of the body. The list does not however include the name of former President of the Nigerian Bar Association, NBA, Olumide Akpata Esq who was last year nominated by the NBA with two others as members. The Body of Benchers had stepped down Akpata’s nomination on the ground that his curriculum vitae did not accompany his recommendation.


In his valedictory speech at the expiration of his tenure as BoB Chairman, Olanipekun SAN noted that “the appointment of Life Benchers, under section 3 (1) (I) of the Legal Practitioners Act and Honorary Benchers are within the exclusive jurisdiction of the Body of Benchers, if and whenever there are vacancies. The Chairman activates the process(es) whenever the need arises. For Life Benchers, nine vacancies existed; for the appointment of Benchers under section 3 (1) (I) of the Legal Practitioners Act, we had two vacancies, while the need to appoint Honourary Benchers could not be overemphasized.”

“I have taken the liberty of my position as the Chairman of the Body of Benchers to send nominations to the Appointment Committee to fill the vacancies under the three categories aforementioned.” Chief Olanipekun SAN said.

The Body of Benchers Chairman revealed that the following has been appointed as life Benchers;

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  1. Hon. Justice M. M. Saulawa – Justice, Supreme Court
    ii. Hon. Justice Ali A. B. Gumel – Presiding Justice, Court of Appeal, Gombe
    iii. Ho n. Justice U. I. Ndukwe – Presiding Justice, Court of Appeal, Enugu
    iv. Dr. Abdulkarim Kana – Hon. Attorney – General, Nasarawa State
    v. Mr. Obafemi Adewale, SAN – Bencher
    vi. Mr. Yunus Ustaz Usman, SAN -Bencher
    vii. Dr. Muiz Banire, OON, SAN -Bencher
    viii. Mr. Olusina Sofola, SAN – Bencher
    ix. Dr. Garba Usman Tetengi, SAN, mni – Bencher

Chief Olanipekun SAN also noted that the Appointment Committee also deliberated on and approved the appointment of Chief Akin Olujinmi CON, SAN and Chief Kanu Agabi, CON, SAN as Benchers under section 3(1)(l) of the Legal Practitioners Act. Both Agabi SAN and Olujinmi SAN had served as the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice of Nigeria. Chief Olanipekun SAN noted that had all things been equal, both of them would have been Benchers a long time ago.


The following were also appointed as Honourary Benchers;

  1. Chief A. B. Anachebe, SAN (South-East) -Legal Practitioner
    ii. Chief Yomi Aliyu, SAN (South-West) -Legal Practitioner
    iii. Mr. Kemasuode Wodu, SAN (South-South)- Legal Practitioner
    iv. Chief Leonard Dan Nzadon (North-East) -Legal Practitioner
    v. Mr. J. S. Okutepa, SAN (North-Central)- Legal Practitioner
    vi. Mrs. Becky Samuel (North-East)- Legal Practitioner
    vii. Hon. Justice Hussaina Aliyu Ibrahim (North-West)- Judge, Jigawa State High Court
    viii. Mr. Mohammed Babangida Umar (North-West)- General Counsel of the F.C.T.A.
    ix. Hon. William Agwadza Atedze (North-Central)- Code of Conduct Tribunal
    x. Mr. Tayo Oyetibo, SAN (South-West)- Legal Practitioner
    xi. Mr. Kunle Uthman (South-West)- Legal Practitioner
    xii. Chief Arthur Obi-Okafor, SAN (South-East)- Legal Practitioner
    xiii. Dr. Roland Otaru, SAN (South-South)- Legal Practitioner

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