Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta has expressed sadness over the demise of a former commissioner in the state and Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Dafe Akpedeye, describing it as a colossal loss.
The governor’s condolence message was contained in a statement issued by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Olisa Ifeajika, on Tuesday in Asaba.
He said Akpedeye, who hailed from Uwheru in Ughelli North Local Government area, died on Monday during a protracted illness at a Lagos hospital, at the age of 59.
Our correspondent reports that the deceased was the Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice in the state between 2007 and 2009.
Okowa commiserated with the people of Ughelli North council area, particularly the Uwheru community and the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) over the passing away of the renowned lawyer.
He noted that Akpedeye was a national and international lawyer, who made invaluable contributions to the development of legal education and practice as SAN and as a law teacher at Delta State University.
The governor said that the departed Akpedeye was a respected professional lawyer and administrator, who excelled as Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice in the state.
He said that the deceased had over 35 years of legal practice experience, ranging from litigation, arbitration and mediation to a record-breaking performance in oil, gas and energy law.
The governor described him as a thoroughbred professional, whose contribution to the society was indelible.
“On behalf of the government and people of Delta, I mourn the passing of a gentleman and thoroughbred professional, Dafe Akpedeye SAN, who reportedly died on Monday.
“The news of his death came to me as a shock and I send my heartfelt condolences to the family, the people of Ughelli North, the Nigerian Bar Association and Delta State University on the passing of the renowned statesman and top-notch lawyer.
“He was a gentleman and brilliant lawyer of international acclaim, who distinguished himself in the service of his people and in the private and public sectors.
“In acknowledgement of Akpedeye’s enormous contributions to law practice, he was elevated to the rank of Senior Advocate of Nigeria in 2004 and recognised by the Federal Republic of Nigeria with the national honour of Officer of the Order of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (OFR) in 2014,” he said.
The governor prayed God to accept the soul of the deceased and grant his family and friends the fortitude to bear the loss.