Court Restores SAN Title Of Kalejaye, Oyinlola’s Lawyer Accused Of Exchanging Texts With Election Tribunal Judge
Kunle Kalejaye, the Ibadan-based lawyer who was stripped of his rank as a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), has regained his title after winning his appeal at the Supreme Court on Friday.
Kalejaye was accused of exchanging text messages with an election tribunal judge, Thomas Naron, during the 2008 governorship election litigation between former Governor Olagunsoye Oyinlola of Osun State and former Governor of Osun State, Rauf Aregbesola.
Kalejaye had faced an inquiry over the alleged conduct since 2008 when a series of text messages between him and the judge were said to be have found their ways into the public.
Nigeria’s Legal Practitioners Privileges Committee (LPPC) later stripped him of his title — one of several disciplinary measures against Kalejaiye.
But a five-man panel of the apex court led by Justice Dattijo Muhammad, on Friday, unanimously overturned the decision of the LPDC on the basis that the constitution of the committee which handed down the sanction breached Kalejaye’s right to fair hearing.Justice Centus Nweze who read the lead judgment of the apex court held that failure of a member of the LPDC to participate in the trial but contributed in the final judgment of the panel was a breach of the appellant’s right to fair hearing.
With the judgement, all his rights and privileges as SAN have been restored.
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