Pilot Law

My most dramatic day in court


Akin Akintoye is one of the veteran legal luminaries based in Ilorin, the Kwara State capital. He secured his LL.B at then University of Ife no Obafemi Awolowo University, Osun State in 1984. He proceeded to the Nigerian Law School in 1985 and was subsequently called to Bar same year. He also bagged a Master Certificate in Law from OAU and in Business Administration from the University of Ilorin. He was formerly in the teaching field at the two aforementioned institutions for 15 years before moving into full legal practice. He is the current Principal of D Akin Akintoye & Co. established in 1963 by his late father. The firm was said to be the first residence chambers in the then middle belt region. He however shares with KAYODE ADEOTI his most memorable day in the profession. Excerpts:

My unforgettable moment in court can always be traced to when I was two years old at the bar. How did it happen?

It was a long time ago in Ibadan, Oyo State when my principal sent me to court on a criminal case with instruction to secure an adjournment. There were about five accused persons in that case but we are representing the first one.

On this fateful day, I got to court early and when the case was called, I announced my appearance, I was the most junior. I told the court that we will be asking for an adjournment but to my dismal, the magistrate refused to grant it and insisted that the case must go on. Incidentally, there was one witness who came from London, he was supposed to give evidence, the magistrate was the view that we wanted to play some tricks on him, so reinstated his insistence that we should go ahead with the matter.

Being the counsel to the first accused, I was the first to cross examine the witness. Then, I started damaging evidences against the accused with all my grammars and the like. After my submission, all other senior lawyers who were supposed to also cross examine were just concurring to what I have said. At the end of the day, I made what is called a no case submission and I remember that the magistrate commented that ‘your principal could not have done better’ than what I did if he were in court. And the matter was decided in my favour.

Incidentally, at the evening of that day, the news was already in papers. That incident encouraged me that I can go far in this profession.

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