Fallen Legal Heroes: Chief Gani Adetola-Kaseem SAN

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Fallen Legal Heroes: Chief Gani Adetola-Kaseem SAN
Late Chief Gani Adetola-Kaseem SAN

Late Chief Gani Adetola-Kaseem SAN FCIArb (1949 – 2018),  was the Principal Partner of Gani Adetola-Kaseem SAN LP. He obtained his LLB and LLM (Hons) from the University of Lagos and was called to the Nigerian Bar in 1980. He was appointed a Notary Public in 1992, and by a dint of hard work, he rose to become a Senior Advocate of Nigeria in 2002.

He established the law firm of Gani Adetola-Kaseem & Co in June 1985 after retiring voluntarily from the Nigerian Federal Public Service as Under -Secretary.  The firm was subsequently rebranded to Gani Adetola-Kaseem (SAN) LP. At the time of his demise, he was the Principal Partner of the Firm.

Until his death, Chief Adetola-Kaseem SAN was a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (FCIArb) and a Member of the Nigeria Institute of Management (MNIM).  He was also a member of the Nigeria Bar Association, Commonwealth Lawyers Association and International Bar Association.

He was legal adviser to several health institutions. In 2011, the Nigerian Bar Association appointed him the pioneer Chairman of the Medical and Health Committee of the Section on Legal Practice of the NBA. He held the position until 2014.

Chief Adetola-Kaseem was a leading practitioner in the area of Medical and Health Law and law relating to the management of health institutions generally.  For over 25 years, he was lead counsel and prosecutor before the Medical and Dental Practitioners Disciplinary Tribunal and had conducted several appeals from the decision of the Tribunal in the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court of Nigeria.

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He participated actively in the committees on the repositioning of the National Industrial Court between 2005 and 2011, the result of the activities culminated in the enactment of the National Industrial Court Act 2006, the National Industrial Court Rules 2007 and Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (Third Alteration) Act 2010, which made NIC a superior Court of Record and expanded its jurisdiction considerably.

He was largely instrumental to the establishment of the Labour and Employment Committee of the Section on Legal Practice of the Nigerian Bar Association.

SAN as he was popularly called among members of Muslim Students Society of Nigeria, Lagos was a consultant to a number of institutions and conducted important negotiations on their behalf on employment-related matters. Chief Gani Adetola-Kaseem, SAN, FCIArb was the lead counsel in the lawsuit against the Government of Lagos State on the ban on wearing of Hijab by Muslim students in schools. Though his team lost at the High Court in 2014, the judgment of the Lagos High Court was subsequently upturned by the Court of Appeal in 2016 there by giving victory to the wherein the Court restored the right of female Muslim students to wear Hijab in schools in Lagos State.

A devote Muslim, and an accomplished lawyer who rose to the pinnacle of his career as a legal practitioner, Chief Gani Adetola-Kaseem SAN died in a Private Hospital in Lagos on the 8th of January 2018 at the age of 69.

He is sorely missed by many.


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