Mr Yemi Candide-Johnson SAN President
Mr. Candide-Johnson SAN is the President of the Lagos Court of Arbitration and the Senior Partner at Strachan Partners, a leading commercial law firm based in Lagos with substantial practice across the nation. He was called to the Nigerian Bar in July, 1984 and conferred with the rank of Senior Advocate of Nigeria in September, 2003.
He received his Master degree in Law from the University of London in 1984 and was appointed a Notary Public for Nigeria in 1988. Between 1984 and 1990, he was counsel in the leading chambers of Jon B. Majiyagbe SAN, in Kano, Nigeria. He moved to Lagos in 1990 to establish the Lagos practice of the firm and in 1994, he set up the law firm of Strachan Partners.Mr. Candide-Johnson SAN has been engaged as leading counsel in ongoing major and high profile commercial and public policy litigation across the courts of Nigeria and has acted as either counsel or arbitrator in several domestic and international commercial arbitrations in the maritime, petroleum and construction industries.
Amongst his notable recent cases include billion-dollar litigations in telecommunications (Motophone v Nigerian Communications Commission) at the Supreme Court of Nigeria, and a series of litigations and International Chamber of Commerce arbitrations concerning ownership and operation of Nigeria’s second GSM telephone franchise Celtel/Zain), as well as the South Atlantic Petroleum v Minister of Petroleum litigation concerning the wrongful seizure of 50% of the billion-dollar OPL 242 petroleum licence.He is a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators of England. He is also an approved tutor and examiner for the UK Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, an honorary fellow at the Centre for International Legal Studies in Salzburg, Austria, and a supporting member of the London Maritime Arbitration Association.Mr. Candide-Johnson SAN is an author of several scholarly papers in the public sphere which include the text, Commercial Arbitration Law and International Practice in Nigeria” which he co-authored with Mr. Olasupo Shasore SAN.
He is a member of the Panel of Neutrals for Lagos State Multi-Door Court House, Lagos; member, Board of Trustees of Communicating for Change; Editorial Consultant, Judgments of the Supreme Court of Nigeria; member, Association of International Petroleum Negotiators; member, Nigerian Communications Commission Panel of Neutrals; Secretary, Parish Church Council, Anglican Church on the Peninsula; member, Board of Directors of LEAP Africa and the Chairman, Nigerian Bar Association Section on Business Law.He was also the legal assessor of the Medical and Dental Practitioners Disciplinary Tribunal, 2000-2005; member, Telecom Sector Reform Implementation Committee for the National Council on Privatization, 2000-2002, Chairman, subcommittee on legal and regulatory matters which was responsible for drafting the Telecommunications Law, 2003; member, Legal Practitioners Privileges Committee, 2006-2010; and the Chairman, Lagos State Arbitration Law Reform Committee, 2007/2008.
Mr Olasupo Shasore SAN Immediate Past President
Olasupo Shasore, Senior Advocate of Nigeria
); Fellow, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators
; partner at ALP
(Africa Law Practice); a leading commercial law firm; Member of the Body of Benchers Nigeria from 2007; Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Lagos State from 2007-2011; Initiated Arbitration Law reforms leading to the passing of the Arbitration Law of Lagos State 2009; Chairman, Law Reform Commission Lagos, Nigeria 2011-2015, past President of the Lagos Court of Arbitration.Shasore has over thirty years of significant experience in acting for sovereign, sub-national and private international parties in international commercial & investment arbitration/ litigation and other advisory capacities. He has represented Sovereign States and entities in leading precedents on Sovereign Immunity in Nigeria and lead counsel in leading investment arbitration case claimants in Interocean v Nigeria at (ICSID Tribunal). He is a frequently selected expert on Nigerian law at arbitration/foreign proceedings. He was a member of ICCA’s Consultative Workshop Cooperation among African Arbitral Initiatives; London Court of International Arbitration Africa User Group; the Panel of Recognised International Market Experts (PRIME) and its Advisory Committee; the International Lawyers for Africa (ILFA); board member of Nigeria Ports Authority and Interswitch.
Author: ‘Commercial Arbitration Law and International Practice in Nigeria’ (2011) (Johnson & Shasore); ‘Jurisdiction and Sovereign Immunity in Nigerian Commercial Law (Practice and Textbook) (NIIA 2007); Publisher and Editor-in-Chief (since 2004), Commercial Law Reports of Nigeria(CLRN).
Mr. Babajide Ogundipe FCIArb Former President
Mr. Ogundipe is a Partner at the law firm of Sofunde, Osakwe, Ogundipe and Belgore. Mr. Ogundipe enrolled as a Solicitor and Advocate of the Supreme Court of Nigeria in July 1979, after obtaining his LLB degree from the University of London in 1978. He was a member of Chief Rotimi Williams’ Chambers, from September 1980 to September 1988, when he became a Founding Partner of Sofunde, Osakwe, Ogundipe & Belgore based in Lagos.Mr. Ogundipe was appointed a Notary Public of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in 1991, a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators in 1994, and has at various times between 1995 and 2009, he held the posts of Secretary, Vice-Chairman and Chairman of the Nigerian Branch of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.He was the Vice-Chair for Africa of the Anti-Corruption Committee of the International Bar Association from January 2010 to December 2011 and, following the re-structuring of the Anti-Corruption Committee, Africa Regional Officer from January 2012 to December 2012 and a member of the Corporate Responsibility and Anti-Corruption Committee of the International Chamber of Commerce.
Mr. Hubert Hourizene
Born and raised in Cote d’Ivoire, Hubert HOURIZENE boasts a sound experience within various industries including banking, private sector development, microfinance and private equity across the continent.
Prior to joining ICF Africa (The Investment Climate Facility for Africa Trust) as Director for Projects since 2010, Hubert served as Managing Director of “Socremo Banco” in Mozambique and CFO of “Africap Microfinance Investment Company”, a leading private equity fund mainly focused on microfinance institutions on the continent. In this capacity, he served on the boards of some microfinance institutions in Ghana, South Africa, Nigeria, Malawi, Tanzania and Mozambique. Before moving outside his country, Hubert was Head of Financial Control and Reporting for Standard Chartered Bank in Abidjan.
His current role entails the oversight of more than 73 projects in areas such as property rights, infrastructure facilitation, trade facilitation, contract enforcement and financial market development within 24 African countries and two regional blocks, OHADA (Organization for the Harmonization of Business Law in Africa) and EAC (East African Communities).
Hubert HOURIZENE was awarded the distinction of Knight of the National Order of Burkina Faso in May 2016.
Hon. Justice Ayotunde Phillips (Rtd.) MCIArb
Justice Phillips was the former Chief Judge of Lagos State until 2014. She started her career at Kehinde Sofola & Co. in 1976. She also worked at the Lagos State Development and Property Corporation where she rose from the position of a Legal Officer to the Chief Legal Officer. She was also the Director of the Commercial Law and Civil Litigation at the Lagos State Ministry of Justice.Justice Phillips was appointed to the Bench in 1994 where she rose to become an Administrative Judge, Head Judge and the Chief Judge of the Lagos State Judiciary in 2012. She is also a board member of the Association of Multi Door Houses of Nigeria, a member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (UK) Nigeria Branch, an arbitration consultant at Phillips Associates and the County Chair of NCMG International.
Mr. Babatunde Fagbohunlu SAN FCIArb
Mr. Fagbohunlu SAN is a Partner and the Head of Litigation, Arbitration and ADR Practice Group at the law firm of Aluko & Oyebode, a commercial law firm with offices in Lagos, Abuja and Port Harcourt. He specialises in arbitration and commercial litigation and has litigated on extensive range of issues, including that pertaining to oil and gas, maritime, intellectual property, telecommunications, taxation, finance and banking, contracts, receiverships and insolvency, commercial law transactions and general litigation at the various courts in Nigeria.Mr. Fagbohunlu SAN has represented various clients including oil companies, telecommunication companies and banks both in litigation and arbitration proceedings. He renders legal advice on a wide range of commercial transactions and regularly represents Nigerians as well as foreign and multinational clients in ad hoc arbitrations and arbitrations administered by arbitral institutions such as the International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce.The legal expertise of Mr. Fagbohunlu SAN has also been recognised in publications such as Who’s Who Legal Nigeria, 2010 and 2012. Where he was described as a “fantastic litigator” and in 2012, he was noted for his “craftsmanship” in constructing legal arguments when representing international entities in arbitration proceedings.Mr. Fagbohunlu SAN has also participated in the International Arbitration Seminar: Transnational Arbitration Issues in Emerging Markets (jointly organised by Aluko & Oyebode and Clyde & Co.) Lagos, Nigeria. He is the Chairman of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce International Arbitration Centre (LACIAC), member of the national committee on the Reform and Harmonization of Arbitration/ADR Laws in Nigeria and in the 2013 Chambers Global legal rankings; he was described as “hard-working and thorough” respected by peers for his litigation skills.
Mrs. Bimpe Elebute Nkontchou MCIArb
Mrs. Elebute Nkontchou is a Partner at the law firm of Addie & Co. Solicitors, London. She has over 20 years’ experience practising law as she previously practised in the Nigerian law firms of Bentley, Edu & Co. and Aluko & Oyebode, as well as in the law firm of SJ Berwin, London.As Partner and Head of the Corporate Law and Commercial Litigation departments at Addie & Co., she advises foreign investors doing business in sub-Saharan Africa (both anglophone and francophone), as well as African entrepreneurs and companies, on their various activities in Europe and on the African continent. Addie & Co also has a well-established international property practice, advising clients on real estate and mortgage transactions in the United Kingdom (UK), United States of America, Dubai and South Africa. The firm also provides expert advice on wealth management and wealth structuring to high net-worth African clients.Mrs. Elebute Nkontchou is a member of the Law Society of England & Wales, a member of the Nigerian Bar Association and is a qualified Trust and Estate Adviser (accredited by the International Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners STEP).She is currently in training as a Commercial Mediator at the London Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and a Trustee of the Africa Centre in Covent Garden, London (a charity established in 1961 to serve as the custodian of African Art and Culture in the UK and to promote African Socio-Economic issues in the UK).
Mrs. Doyin Rhodes-Vivour FCIArb
Mrs. Rhodes-Vivour is the Managing Partner, Doyin Rhodes-Vivour & Co. Solicitors, Advocates and Arbitrators. She is a British Government Chevening Scholar and awardee of the United States Young African Leaders Programme.Mrs. Rhodes-Vivour is also a member of the Court of the Permanent Court of Arbitration, Hague, Netherlands; the International Maritime Conciliation and Mediation Panel, the International Chamber of Commerce Commission on Arbitration and the Governing Council of the Nigerian Chamber of Shipping. She is a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators United Kingdom and the Institute of Directors London (Nigerian Branch), an Accredited Mediator Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR) (UK) and a Notary Public of Nigeria.She has acted as arbitrator and mediator in various disputes and has significant experience and expertise in international and domestic arbitration. Mrs. Rhodes-Vivour is the Immediate Past President, Maritime Arbitrators Association of Nigeria, the Pioneer Chairperson, Nigerian Bar Association Committee on Arbitration/ADR (2005 – 2010) and, the former Vice Chairperson of the Institute of Directors (UK) Nigerian Branch Law Reform Committee.She is also an approved tutor of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators United Kingdom, the 2nd Vice Chairman of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (UK) Nigeria Branch and is listed on various domestic and international arbitration panels including the Lagos Regional Centre for International Commercial Arbitration set up under the auspices of the Asian – African Legal Consultative Committee, the International Centre for Dispute Resolution (ICDR), the International Division of the American Arbitration Association (AAA), the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC), the Dubai International Arbitration Centre (DIAC), the London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA), the Lagos Multidoor Courthouse, the Abuja Multi-door Courthouse, the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (England), and the Maritime Arbitrators Association of Nigeria.She has also been listed in the 2009, 2010 and 2011 editions of Who’s Who Legal and she is recognised as one of the world’s leading arbitrators. She is listed in the 8th and 9th editions of Guide to the World’s Leading Commercial Arbitration Experts as a preeminent professional in the field of arbitration.Her experience in arbitration and ADR includes that relating to oil and gas, investment, maritime, construction, banking and other commercial disputes. She delivers papers at various international and domestic fora and has published articles on arbitration and ADR mechanisms.Mrs. Rhodes-Vivour is also a member of various international organisations including the International Law Association, the Association for International Arbitration International Bar Association, the Nigerian Society of International Law, the Nigerian Bar Association, the London Maritime Arbitrators Association, the Nigerian Chamber of Shipping and the Association of International Petroleum Negotiators (AIPN). She is a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, England and a fellow of the Institute of Directors, London (Nigerian Branch).
Prof. Fabian Ajogwu SAN FCIArb
Prof. Fabian Ajogwu SAN is a Senior Partner at the law firm of Kenna Partners. He holds a doctorate degree in law from University of Aberdeen, Scotland, an MBA from the IESE Business School, University of Navarra, Barcelona; and law degrees from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka and University of Lagos. He also an alumnus of the Oxford University Business School and the Lagos Business School. He has written several articles and technical papers published in international journals and he is registered with the European Case Clearing House. Prof. Ajogwu SAN has also presented papers at several conferences, he has been Lead Counsel to the Federal Government of Nigeria in several court matters of significant national importance in the field of aviation, defence and financial regulation.He is also the founder and a fellow of the Society for Corporate Governance Nigeria, a fellow, and member of the Governing Council of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators Nigeria and a member of the London Court of International Arbitration. He is a member of the Council of Legal Education; he serves on the Governing Council of the Pan-Atlantic University (Lagos Business School) and he is a fellow of the African Leadership Initiative West Africa, Henry Crown Global Leadership of the Aspen Institute.He also serves on various boards and chairs the boards of a number of Nigerian companies. He has served as Honorary Counsel to the State of Israel in Nigeria, and Republic of South African in Nigeria and he has assisted the Securities and Exchange Commission in drafting Nigeria’s pioneer Code of Corporate Governance. He has also chaired the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) Committee on Corporate Governance that produced the 2014 NCC Code of Corporate Governance for the Telecommunications Sector.He is the author of the books, “Commercial Arbitration in Nigeria: Law & Practice”, “Fair Hearing”, “Corporate Governance in Nigeria: Law & Practice”, “Legal & Regulatory Aspects of Commerce”, and “Mergers & Acquisition in Nigeria, Law & Practice”.
Mrs. Olufunke Adekoya SAN FCIArb
Mrs. Adekoya SAN is a Partner in the law firm, ǼLEX. She has over 35 years’ experience in commercial litigation and corporate dispute resolution.She has acted either as sole or party appointed arbitrator or arbitration counsel in numerous arbitrations, both domestic and international for major local and international corporations in matters ranging from straightforward commercial disputes to complex construction and energy industry disputes. She also assists and advises offshore counsel in foreign arbitration proceedings on issues of Nigerian law.
Mrs. Adekoya SAN regularly lectures on arbitration law and procedure and has been approved by the CharteredInstitute of Arbitrators UK (Nigeria Branch) as a tutor and course director at the fellowship level. She is listed on various panels, including those of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (UK) Nigeria Branch, International Centre for Dispute Resolution Energy Arbitrators List, the London Court of International Arbitration African Users Council, the Lagos Regional Centre for International Commercial Arbitration, the Lagos Multi-door Court House and the Nigerian Communications Commission.She has received an inaugural award from a local financial newspaper and women’s group as the Most Outstanding Female Legal Practitioner of the Year, 2007. She received recognition as one of Nigeria’s leading arbitrators and commercial litigation experts by “Who’s Who Legal” in its 2009 Special Report on Nigeria and is a life member of the International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA).Within the International Bar Association (IBA), Mrs. Adekoya SAN belongs to the Legal Practice Division (Arbitration Committee and Section on Energy and Natural Resources Law), the Public and Professional Interest Division (Law Firm Management Committee) and is also an Advisory Board Member of the IBA’s African Regional Forum as well as an Officer of its Bar Issues Commission.Mrs. Adekoya SAN has also participated in the drafting of the High Court of Lagos State (Civil Procedure) Rules, 2004; she authored the chapter on Nigeria in Colliers International Business Insolvency Guide and the Nigerian entry in Dispute Resolution 2006/2007 and she participated in the Consultative Assembly on the Reform of Company Law in Nigeria as a member of the Editorial Committee which produced the Companies and Allied Matters Act in 1990.
Mrs. Funmi Roberts FCIArb
Mrs. Roberts is the Principal of Funmi Roberts & Co. and she heads the ADR unit of the firm. She is a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (UK) Nigeria Branch and an Accredited Mediator of the CEDR and a member of the training faculties of both organisations. Mrs. Roberts is also a member of several professional organisations including, the Nigerian Bar Association in which she is a member of the National Executive Committee, the Women’s Forum Executive Council; Member and Vice Chairman, Arbitration and ADR Committee of Section on Business Law arm of the NBA.She is a Member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, Arbitral Women, Association of CEDR-Accredited Mediators of Nigeria (ACAMON); Maritime Arbitrators Association of Nigeria (MAAN), Africa Development Bank, List of Mediators and Panel of Neutrals of the Multi-door Courthouses in Abuja and Lagos.Mrs. Roberts has also made several presentations on dispute resolution and has published several articles on dispute resolution, the latest being ‘Cultural Nuances to Mediating Commercial Disputes in Nigeria’ published in (August 2010) in the Journal of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (UK).
Mrs. May Mbu MCIArb
Mrs. Mbu is the Principal Partner of Norfolk Partners and the Editor of ThisDay Lawyer. She specialises in Corporate and International Business law, arbitration and ADR. She graduated from the University of Ife in 1984 and was called to the Nigerian Bar in 1985.She also qualified as a Solicitor of the Supreme Court of England and Wales in 1999 and has obtained a Masters in Law, a Postgraduate Diploma in International Business Law and a Postgraduate Certificate in International Dispute Resolution from the University of London.Mrs. Mbu is a member and Assistant Secretary of the Chartered Institute of Arbitration United Kingdom and several other professional associations such as the London Court of International Arbitration User’s Council, the Nigerian Bar Association, Law Asia and the Law Society of England and Wales.She has considerable board experience serving in various organisations and is currently on the advisory board of Alegna Global Partnerships Limited, a management consultancy and financial firm.She is also a member of the executive Council of the Women in Management, Business and Public Service (WIMBIZ), a non-governmental organisation that seeks to improve the success rate of female entrepreneurs and increase the proportion of women in senior positions in corporate organisations. Mrs. Mbu has also served as a member of the Presidential Project Assessment Committee (2010-2011) to access all Federal Government projects.
Mrs. Oyinkan Badejo-Okusanya MCIArb
Mrs Badejo-Okusanya is a former General Counsel to the Governor of Lagos State, Nigeria Mr Babatunde Fashola SAN . Prior to this appointment in August 2011, she was the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Justice Sector Reform, a position she held from August 2007 to July 2011. In this capacity she worked in the Office of the Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice to help conceptualise and implement the various justice administration and justice service delivery reform programmes of the Administration.Prior to joining the Lagos State Government, she worked as a barrister in the Dispute Resolution practice of Olaniwun Ajayi, LP; one of Nigeria’s leading commercial law firms and later headed the Public Affairs and Regulatory Unit of the Enterprise Practice at the same firm.Mrs Badejo-Okusanya was educated at the University of Lagos, where she obtained a B.A. (Hons.) degree and an LL.B (Hons) degree respectively. She is a CEDR Accredited Mediator; a member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators U.K; the Nigerian Bar Association; the International Bar Association and the Commonwealth Lawyers Association. She was the inaugural Secretary to the Board of the Lagos Court of Arbitration from 2010 to 2012 and serves on the Executive Committee of the CIArb (Nigeria Branch).
Mr. Sadiq Abubakar Adamu
Mr. Adamu is currently the Company Secretary and Assistant General Counsel ExxonMobil Nigeria. He attended Bayero University, Kano where he obtained an LLB, the Harvard University Law School where he obtained a master’s degree in law, the University of Oxford School of Energy and Natural Resources for a postgraduate certificate in advance negotiation and the Nigerian Institute of Advance Legal Studies for a post graduate certification in advanced legal drafting in addition to several in-house training in management and executive function.He started his legal career as a public prosecutor with the Plateau State Ministry of Justice; he also worked at the law office of R.O Yussuf and Co. and Miskom Puepet & Co. after which he left to set up his law firm, Sadiq & Co. After his graduation from Harvard, Mr. Adamu joined Mobil Oil Corporation in Virginia, USA in 1992 and he has worked for Mobil in Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates before he returned to Nigeria.Mr. Adamu has vast experience in the hydrocarbon development industry which spans for over 23 years. This includes legal support for upstream, midstream (natural gas monetisation- domestic and international planning, developing and sales) and downstream business with emphasis on the negotiation and finalisation of development agreements, financing, human resource management, dispute resolution, project agreements, regulatory compliance and general joint venture relations management.He is keenly interested in debating topical legal and political issues; he is also actively invested in and has contributed immensely to the development and social networking activities of associations and clubs like the Harvard Club of New York, the International Bar Association and the Nigerian Bar of Humanity.
Mr. Ucheora Onwuamaegbu
Mr. Onwuamaegbu provides advisory services to foreign investors and Governments, while also acting as arbitrator in international disputes. For over a decade, he was Senior Counsel at the World Bank’s International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) where he administered numerous arbitrations under treaties, national laws and contracts.Prior to ICSID, Mr. Onwuamaegbu was a lawyer at the United Nations Compensation Commission, Geneva and he was responsible for claims for business losses by airlines and shipping companies, as well as claims for lost bank remittances, among others. He serves as Legal Advisor to the State of Kuwait’s National Focal Point that supervises the implementation of a multi-billion dollar post award environmental remediation program; and he has served on a committee responsible for privatising solid mineral assets of Nigeria.He is also a Solicitor of the Supreme Court of England and Wales, a former Senior Visiting Fellow at Columbia University’s Vale Centre on Sustainable International Investment and he has written and spoken extensively on international investment dispute resolution.
Executive Secretary/Secretary to the Board