Shock envelopes Nigeria legal profession

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Shock enveloped the legal profession and the corporate headquarters of The Guardian in Lagos on Friday when news of the death of lawyer and member of its editorial board, Olakunle Alex Fadipe filtered in.

Fadipe was killed at his Ifako-Ijaiye, Ogba residence by assailants who laid siege on his compound late on Thursday night. The assailant was however apprehended by local security operatives.

When his residence was visited at Adeleke Odunuga Street, Harmony Estate, Karaole, Ifako-Ijaiye Friday, his wife Kemi, children and family members were in grief.

Giving insight into the events that led to the death of the brilliant lawyer, his immediate younger brother, Mr Olaleye Fadipe said he was stabbed by the assailant after which he lost a lot of blood, leading to his death.

According to him, Fadipe returned from his chambers at about 10pm on Thursday night. ?There was power outage. So one of his children came down to switch on the power generating set. It is believed that the assailant followed him back in and got access into the building.

?After stabbing his target, he attempted to escape but one of Fadipe?s children had ran out to alert the OPC members at the estate gate. The guards swung into action and arrested him before he could get away. He was later handed over to men of the Nigeria Police Force from Iju Police station,? he said.

The deceased?s brother added that the Police are however investigating the case to unravel if it was actually a case of assasination or robbery.

Fadipe Olakunle Alex was born in 1963. A native of Ile-ife, Osun State, Fadipe was a 1987 law graduate of the University of Lagos.

He worked as counsel at Gani Fawehinmi?s Chamber between 1988 and 1991. He was an assistant Counsel, Supreme Court of Nigeria Law Reports edited by Chief Gani Fawehinmi.

Deputy editor, Supreme Court of Nigeria Law Report, he headed T.O.S Benson and Co Chamber between 1994 and 1997.

He was a Federal Commissioner, National Human Rights Commission between 1996-2000.

He was a Special Rapporteur on Prisons and Places of Detention, National Human Rights Commission. Until his death, he was principal counsel at Kunle Fadipe and co, Chairman Harmony Estate Community Development Association, a Visiting Member of the editorial board of The Guardian. He also wrote opinion articles fairly regularly. His last article, titled A Justice delivery system so unfriendly was published in the opinion page of The Guardian yesterday.

Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Umaru Manko visited the late Fadipe?s residence Friday.

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