Ayo Gabriel Irikefe

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Ayo Gabriel Irikefe
Chief Justice of Nigeria
In office
Preceded byGeorge Sodeinde Sowemimo
Succeeded byMohammed Bello
Personal details
Born(1922-03-03)3 March 1922
Ikorodu Lagos State
DiedAugust 1, 1996
Political partyNon-partisian

Chief Ayo Gabriel Irikefe, SAN OFR, CON, GCFR (March 3, 1922 – August 1, 1996) was a Nigerian Jurist and former Chief Justice of Nigeria.[1]

Early life[edit]

Irikefe was born on March 1922 to the family of Aduwa and Theresa Irikefe. He was born at Ikorodu, a local government area of Lagos State in southwestern Nigeria. He started his education at a CMS school in Okitipupa, then went to St John's School Okitpupa, St Mathews Catholic School, Ode-Ondo and St. Gregory's College, Obalende, Lagos where he obtained the West Africa School Certificate.[2] He initially studied at the College of Marine Engineering and Communications, Manchester between 1945 and 1946 before deciding to study law in 1949.

Law career[edit]

He was called to the English Bar on July 1, 1952, the same year he established his own law firm. He was in legal practice in Warri from 1952 until 1955. In 1955, he rose to the position of a Crown Counsel to the Western Region of Nigeria where he served at Ibadan and later transferred to Benin city. He was a leading counsel to the committee that probed the activities of the Owegbe cult and was later appointed a judge in the High Court of Mid-Western Nigeria. In 1966, he became the Attorney General of the Mid-Western State, a position he held until he was appointed to the bench of the Supreme Court of Nigeria as Justice.[3] In 1985 he became a member of the Nigerian Body of Benchers, the same year he was appointed as the Chief Justice of Nigeria to succeed George Sodeinde Sowemimo.[4]

Irikefe retired in 1985 having attained the statutory retirement age of 65.[5][6]

In 1975, he was made chairman of the panel on the creation of states and in 1980, Irikefe was appointed chairman of the Crude Oil Sales Tribunal to look into allegations of missing funds within the Nigerian petroleum corporation.


  1. ^ http://pointblanknews.com/pbn/exclusive/20-reasons-nigerians-rejected-buhari-since-2003/
  2. ^ "Federal Judicial Service Commission". fjsconline.gov.ng. Archived from the original on 2014-12-03. Retrieved 26 April 2015.
  3. ^ "Oil, Politics and Violence". google.co.uk. Retrieved 26 April 2015.
  4. ^ "Prosecutorial Powers of the Attorney-General under the Constitution: the Supreme Court erred in law and undermined the Public Interest in The State v Ilori". Sahara Reporters. Retrieved 26 April 2015.
  5. ^ "NIGERIA'S LEADERSHIP: RATION 2:1, ANOTHER FEATHER ON JONATHAN'S CAP". TheNigerianVoice. Retrieved 26 April 2015.
  6. ^ "Digest of Judgements of the Supreme Court of Nigeria". google.co.uk. Retrieved 26 April 2015.