The University of Ife (Obafemi Awolowo University) Law Class of 1987 has honoured four members of its set who have distinguished themselves in the legal profession and positively impacted the society.
The honourees - Justice of the Court of Appeal (JCA) Olabode Adegbehingbe, Prof Olanrewaju Fagbohun, SAN; Mr Robert Emukperuo, SAN; and Prof Gbadebo Olagunju - were feted at an award ceremony in Ikeja, Lagos last Friday.
Fagbohun is the immediate past Vice Chancellor of the Lagos State University, (LASU), while Olagunju, Dean of the Faculty of Law at LASU, is the latest Professor produced by the class.
President Unife Law Class of 1987 Association Mr Caleb Arogundade said the third honouree, Emukperuo "is the latest addition to our 'harvest' of Senior Advocates of Nigeria".
He noted that Justice Adegbehingbe JCA was the first to be appointed a Judge among the class members, having been appointed as a Judge of the Ondo State High Court in the year 2002. He is also one of the Judges recently elevated to the Court of Appeal.
The Ife Law Class of 1987 prides itself as the "the Class of Distinction." Arogundade explained why. He said: "This befitting appellation stemmed from the record of achievements of our members, since our graduation from the University of Ife in July 1987. With all sense of humility, our class has eight Justices of the High Court nationwide, and a Justice of the Court of Appeal".
"This class has produced eight Senior Advocates of Nigeria, and seven Professors, with two of them serving as current Deans at the Faculties of Law at Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife (OAU) and Lagos State University, (LASU) respectively.
"One of us? has served as the Vice Chancellor of a frontline University. Beyond the giant strides of our members in the Judiciary, Legal Practice and Academia, members of this Class have distinguished themselves as industrialists, private entrepreneurs, banking and insurance executives, reputable tax consultants, top civil servants, spiritual leaders, politicians, legislators and top law practitioners. These achievers are all pulling their weight, both at home and abroad.
The event which was well attended by members of the class from across the world, was chaired by Justice Habeeb Abiru (JCA), while Prof Ishaq Oloyede was the guest speaker.
Oloyede, in his keynote speech, urged Nigerians to insist on credible leadership, adding that the impact of poor leadership reflects in the lingering dysfunctional educational system, as well as the food insecurity and other concerns in Nigeria.
"The day Prof Oloyede returned billions to the coffers of the Federal Government, some Nigerians we're saying who asked him to return the money? Who asked him? Money they're going to steal at the end of the day? Why did he have to return the money to the National Assembly for the money to be appropriated or re-appropriated?"
The honourees expressed joy and gratitude to their colleagues, for the awards. They also reflected on national issues.