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Legal icon Chris Ogunbanjo dies at 99 — two months before 100th birthday

Christopher Oladipo Ogunbanjo, a corporate lawyer and businessman, has died at 99 – two months before his 100th birthday.

In a statement announcing his passing, his family said: “Papa was an unwavering beacon of reassurance, courage and moral integrity for the entire family, truly embodying dedication and service to his country”.

The legal icon and Ijebu high chief who once partnered Ladoke Akintola, former premier of Western Nigeria, died on Saturday, October 7.

Ogunbanjo was born in the Erunwon-Ijebu area in Ogun into the Christian family of Daniel Ogunbanjo and Madam Towobola on December 14, 1923. 

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He attended St. Phillips primary school, Aiyetoro, Ile-Ife before proceeding to Oduduwa college, Ife for his secondary education in 1936.

In 1938, he moved to Igbobi college in Lagos where he completed his secondary education.

Ogunbanjo obtained a law degree in 1949 at the University of London and was called to the bar in 1950.

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He began his legal practice in 1950 as a partner in a law firm then known as Samuel, Chris & Michael, with Ladoke Akintola and Michael Odesanya as the other partners.

After the dissolution of the partnership in 1960, he created Chris Ogunbanjo & Co, a commercial law firm which became a legal training ground for many successful lawyers in Nigeria.

Ogunbajo was married to Hilda Adunola Ladipo until her death in August 2004.

“Information regarding his obsequies, the venue for condolence visits and visiting hours will be shared by the family in due course,” the family said.

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