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Nigeria’s oldest practicing lawyer, Tunji Gomez is dead

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Lukman Olabiyi

Nigeria’s oldest practicing lawyer and rights activist, Pa Tunji Gomez is dead.

Announcing his death, on Wednesday, the Chairman of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) Lagos Branch Mr. Chukwuka Ikwuazom wrote, “It is with a heavy heart that I announce the passing of Pa Tunji Gomez.

“Pa Gomez was until his death yesterday night, the oldest practicing lawyer in Nigeria and a deeply loved member of the Premier Bar.

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“The Branch had, in recognition of his excellent service and uncommon devotion to the Branch, celebrated his 90th birthday in style a few months ago.

“Our deepest condolences go to his immediate family. We will greatly miss Pa Gomez and pray that his soul will rest in perfect peace.

“We will make further announcements in due course.”

The announcement apparently threw the entire branch into a mourning mood, leading to a flurry of condolence messages.

The late Gomez was called to the Nigerian Bar in 1961 and did his pupilage in the chambers of Oxford-trained lawyer, Michael Odesanya.

As a junior, Gomez was in the team of lawyers that defended late politician Chief Obafemi Awolowo in his trial in the celebrated treasonable felony case of 1962.

Late Gomez will also be remembered for his unsuccessful struggle for the abolition of the rank of Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN).

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