This Day (Lagos)

22 December 2012

Nigeria: Ilesa Stands Still As Justice Kayode Eso Is Buried

The Primate of the Anglican Church, Reverend Nicholas Okoh, has stated that the only way to immortalise the late Justice Kayode Eso was for Nigerians to allow justice to prevail in all circumstances.

Okoh in a sermon yesterday during the service in honour of Eso at the Anglican Church of the Holy Trinity, Ilesa, Osun State described the late jurist as a champion of justice and jurist of the helpless.

According to the cleric, unless Nigerians realise that there is value beyond money, the problem of graft and corruption will be difficult for government to tackle.

The cleric encouraged Nigerians to see death as "a gateway to the fullness of life especially for those who shunned corruption and tolled the path of righteousness."

Okoh also advised Nigerians to invest their life and times in things that would help humanity and advance development of the nation.

He added that parents have a stake in raising great leaders for the country by inculcating moral and social values in their children.

Osun State governor, Rauf Aregbesola said the late jurist would be remembered for his landmark judgements.

Aregbesola in his tribute at a farewell oratory session in honour of Eso, said the late jurist was a gallant man of valour, resilience as well as a quintessential person, judge of judges, father of judicial activism who could be well fitted into knighthood.

He recalled how Eso distinguished himself in a dissenting judgement of six to one during the celebrated Shagari versus Awolowo case after the 1979 presidential election.

Aregbesola said Eso had posited that two third of nineteen was thirteen and could not be twelve two third, noting that there could not be a fraction of any state.

The governor also referred to the case of the state versus Wole Soyinka "which he handled with dexterity" to secure the release of the Nobel Laureate among other landmark judgements.

In his own tribute, Justice Emmanuel Ayoola, former Justice of the Supreme Court said the late Judge was an example of how to live a worthy life for the succeeding generation.

Ayoola, who was a former Chairman of the ICPC, described Eso as an enduring reality.

Also speaking, Dr Festus Ajayi (SAN), first Attorney-General of Western Region said the character of the late jurist was worthy of emulation by all and sundry, saying, "I couldn't believe he had died."

He said everyone either in the legal profession or in any other spheres of human endeavour should continue to see Eso as a man of exemplary character.

Mrs Gloria Oladoke, Acting Chief Judge of Osun State said Eso's demise was not only a monumental loss to his family but to everyone who knew what the late judge stood for.

Oladoke said the late legal icon stood for quality judgement, forthrightness, truth, love, hardwork as revealed in all his judgements such as the Shagari versus Awolowo among others.

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