The President of the Nigerian Bar Association, Mr Yakubu Chonoko Maikyau, OON, SAN, expressed deep sorrow at the passing of two esteemed figures in the legal profession, Prof. Benjamin Obi Nwabueze, OON, SAN, and Chief George Nwokocha-Ona Uwechue, SAN, on October 29, 2023.
Prof. Nwabueze SAN, a pioneer in his field, held the distinction of being the first academic to be appointed a Senior Advocate of Nigeria. Throughout his life, he made significant contributions to constitutional law and served as a Minister of Education and Youth Development. His expertise and leadership will be greatly missed.
Chief Uwechue SAN, a respected legal practitioner, was called to the Nigerian Bar in 1966 and attained the rank of Senior Advocate in 1993. He was known for his professionalism and served as Chairman of the Body of Benchers from 2010 to 2011. Additionally, he served two terms as a member of the Nigerian House of Representatives.
Mr. Maikyau expressed his heartfelt condolences, describing the loss of Prof. Nwabueze and Chief Uwechue as a significant loss to the nation and the legal profession. He acknowledged their exceptional contributions as not only outstanding lawyers but also as influential thinkers and leaders in Nigeria.
The NBA President emphasised that the Bar would strive to preserve their legacies, ensuring that their teachings and principles continue to guide legal practitioners. He quoted the famous words of Chief Alexander Sapara Williams, the first Nigerian lawyer, stating that a lawyer lives to serve their people and advance their country’s cause.
Mr. Maikyau extended his sympathies to the families and friends of Prof. Nwabueze and Chief Uwechue, urging them to find solace in knowing that both individuals lived fulfilling lives. He prayed for strength and comfort for those left behind in coping with these irreplaceable losses.
Akorede Habeeb Lawal
National Publicity Secretary,
Nigerian Bar Association.
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