April 17, 2024

Olayiwola Afolabi, A Model for Senior Advocate of Nigeria


Afolabi Olayiwola

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By Orobosa Omo-Ojo JP

Defender of the Masses,. Civil Rights Advocate. Philanthropist extraordinaire, Afolabi Olayiwola Esq will finally be honoured with the award of Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) that fits his tenacious service to community.

Afolabi? Yes! He is rightly a Senior Advocate of Nigeria. I can, like several Nigerians, attest to his advocacy style which has made him to record several successes in his law practice.

Afolabi readiness to provide Legal aid and deploy alternative dispute resolution mechanism places him in a very special position in the legal profession and now, amongst the prestigious club of SANs.

I first met Mr. Olayiwola Afolabi sometimes in 2011 in the course of matter where he represented a very dear friend against me.

Through the cutting edge approach deployed by this meritorious SAN, the very knotty misunderstanding was nipped in the bud to the admiration of then Assistant Inspector General of Police, MD Abubakar.

After that incident, I took personal interest in Afolabi’s legal activism, including his active involvement in charity, communal dispute resolution and public opinion discourse.

In all, the people’s SAN has always displayed the character of Nitin Namdeo, when he said: “As long as you are living only for yourself, you are not living at all.”

Through his law firm – Olayiwola Afolabi and Co, he has consistently provided assistance to people who are unable to afford legal representation or access to the court system, because to him, legal aid is central in the provision of access to justice, and equality before the law, and the right to a fair trial.

Afolabi is an indigene of Ekiti State, South West Nigeria. His name resonates across Nigeria because of his charity and landmark cases he has won at the Supreme Court of Nigeria.

Afolabi has remained a zygote in our society, and has remained a receptor of good works so much so that he instuituted several awards award to honour honest, disciplined and diligent junior staff of Edo State judiciary.

He has also institutionalized mentorship process with the establishment of Afolabi Annual Legal Clinic Coaching Lecture Series, in addition to the hundreds of free wigs and gowns to the best graduating students from the law faculties of the University of Benin and Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma, both in Edo State.

On his activism side, where he is more at home, Comrade Afolabi in 2016, embarked on a one-man protest march at the Benin High Court and Ministry of Justice premises where he called on Edo State Government to pay the over eight months salary arrears of about 2000 staff in the state, who had embarked on strike demanding financial autonomy for Edo Judiciary since it was affirmed by a high court ruling.

Following that protest, Comrade Afolabi again, queried Edo State Government for unexplained delay in paying the June salaries of magistrates in the state. His action brought the hitherto silent plight to the public discuss and prompt payment of that outstanding wages.

Even as he awaits his formal decoration, Afolabi, has continued in his advocacy. The latest being his call on members of the National Assembly to intervene in the bill for a law to establish the police pension board to ensure efficiency and transparency.     

The road you have traveled will certainly lead to more greatness and honour!

Congratulations to a diligent community leader, the avowed philanthropist, the nationalist and the peoples Senior Advocate of Nigeria!!


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