My Judicial Odyssey – Honourable Justice Opeyemi Oke

Lagos Chief Judge. Justice Oke

Excerpt from the Lagos State Chief Judge Honourable Justice Opeyemi O. Oke’s speech on her swearing in as the 16th Chief Judge as well as the 6th Female Chief Judge of Lagos State on the 20th of October, 2017.

It is with reverence to Almighty God, the one who installs, appoints and elevates whomever He will, and in deference to our indefatigable Governor, His Excellency, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode, that I stand before you all as the Chief Judge of Lagos State. Today’s ceremony is one of the greatest moments of my life. I am thankful. I am grateful. I am overwhelmed and thus return all Adoration to God.

I am immensely thankful to the Lagos State Governor, His Excellency, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode and the Lagos State Judiciary for bringing me to this exalted office of Chief Judge.

I also want to extend special gratitude to the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Honourable Justice Walter N.S. Onnoghen, GCON, all members of the National Judicial Council, the Speaker of the House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Obasa all members of the Lagos State House of Assembly, predecessor, Hon. Justice Oluwafunmilayo Atilade (Mrs.) and Brother and Sister Judges, members of the Judicial Service Commission of Lagos State and His Royal Majesty, Alaiyeluwa Oba Rilwanu Babatunde Osuolale Aremu Akiolu 1, the Oba of Lagos for his support.

I extend my gratitude to the members of the Inner Bar and Outer Bar who have been full of expectation regarding my appointment and members of staff of my constituency- the Lagos Judiciary. I offer a toast to our constitutional democracy under which we undergo this smooth transition of leadership in the judicial arm of the government. I express special appreciation to my family for their prayers and support. I extend my gratitude to host of other well wishers who are too numerous to mention.

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I joined the Lagos State Judiciary upon my appointment as a Senior Magistrate on 1st May 19th 1986 and worked up the ladder meritoriously to become a Chief Magistrate (Administration) and Deputy Chief Registrar. I was appointed a Judge of the High Court of Lagos State on 17 July 1996.

Today marks the beginning of a new chapter in my legal odyssey having been sworn in as the Chief Judge of Lagos State, indeed the 6th female Chief Judge and the 16th Chief Judge of Lagos State.

I am full aware of the heritage and legacy handed over to me today. The track records of my predecessors in this office are remarkable, and as I assume this exalted position, I am fully conscious of the enormous responsibility thrust upon me. With the support of the Executive and Legislative arms of government, my brother and sister judges, all stakeholders and partners in the administration of justice, it is now my turn as ordained by God Almighty to build in their legacies and take Judiciary to the next level.

I am equally aware of the high expectations of the Governor of Lagos State, His Excellency, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode, the Lagos State Judiciary and indeed the majority of citizens of this Centre of Excellence. I have implicit confidence that the Almighty God will uphold, support and encouragement, empower me as I embark on this new, onerous and sacred task of service to humanity in the temple of Justice, the Lagos State Judiciary.

Honourable Justice Opeyemi Oke, Chief Judge, Lagos State.


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