Dr. Wale Babalakin S.A.N
Dr. Babalakin attended the University of Lagos, Nigeria, where he obtained an LL.B (Hons.) in 1981. He thereafter proceeded to the University of Cambridge, where he obtained an LL.M in 1983 and a Ph.D in 1986. He was a Commonwealth Scholar of the University of Cambridge, 1984-1986. Dr Wale Babalakin was admitted to the Nigerian Bar in 1982.
Dr. Babalakin is a member of the Body of Benchers, which is the highest legal body regulating the affairs of legal practitioners in Nigeria. He is an active member of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), where he is currently the Chairman of both the Committee on Construction and Real Estate under the Section on Business Law and the Committee on Government Practice under the Section on Legal Practice. He is also a member of the International Bar Association. He was appointed by Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, former President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as Chairman of the Constitutional Drafting Sub-Committee of the National Political Reforms Conference in 2005; Member, National Political Reforms Conference in 2005 and Vice Chairman of the Committee on the Review of the Evidence Act CAP 112 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 1990 in 2005. Dr. Babalakin is currently the Pro-chancellor of the University of Maidugri and Chairman, Committee of Pro-Chancellors of Nigeria Federal Universities. Dr. Babalakin is the Senior Partner of the firm.
Dr. Babalakin was conferred with the rank of Senior Advocate of Nigeria in 2002.
He was also conferred with the National Honour of Officer of the Federal Republic (OFR), in February 2008. In 2007 he was appointed as the Honorary Special Adviser on Legal Matters and General Counsel to the former President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, late Alhaji Musa Yar’dua.
Notable work undertaken
Dr. Babalakin has considerable experience in Litigation, Arbitration, Real Estate law and Project Finance. He has acted in high profile Commercial Arbitrations proceedings and Civil Litigations in disputes arising from various sectors of the Nigerian economy. He has conducted trials and appeals in all our courts, from the courts of first to the Supreme Court in matters of significant constitutional national importance and equally in commercial transactions that cut across the entire gamut of Nigeria’s economy- construction, real estate, oil and gas, telecoms, maritime, aviation, banking and financing.
Dr. Babalakin has worked with Federal and several State Governments in conceptualizing transactions to support the development of infrastructure and investment in the country. He led the team of legal consultants to a state government for the building of an international airport in Nigeria, a multimillion dollar project. He is currently leading the team representing a state government in an arbitration claim arising therefrom.
Dr. Babalakin led the team of lawyers who represented the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation in a $100 million dollar claim in arbitral proceedings for the determination of contractual rights and obligations of the Corporation. Dr. Babalakin also led the team of lawyers in a landmark election petition case which resulted in the appointment of one of Nigeria’s Senate Presidents. He is also acting as lead Counsel in arbitral proceedings on behalf of a state owned oil company, in a billion dollar claim.
Relevant publications/ Conference presentations
Dr. Babalakin is a much sought after speaker in the Nigerian legal profession and has presented so many papers at seminars, conferences and workshops in Nigeria and abroad on topical issues of law, some of which include:
“Buyer's Right of Rejection: Whither Nigerian Courts,”1980.
“The Supreme Court and Constitutional Developments in Nigeria, 1960- 1985” Ph.D Thesis Cambridge University, 1986.
“Legal Dynamics of Privatization in Nigeria” presentation at the First Bank Round Table, Lagos, 2003.
“Foreign Investments in Nigeria”, presentation at the Johannesburg Chamber of Commerce, South Africa, 2000.
“Aviation Infrastructure Financing: The MMA2 Project”, presentation at the workshop on Aviation Financing, Lagos, 2008.
“Public Private Partnership as a Catalyst for Sustainable Development: MMA2, a case study”, presentation at the 4th Nigerian Bar Association, Section on Business Law conference, Abuja, 2009.
“Aviation Financing: Statutory and Legal Challenges”, presentation at a Seminar for Judges on Banking and Allied Matters, Abuja, 2007.
“Shariah, its Place in the Modern Legal Order” presentation at a memorial lecture organised by the National Association of Muslim Students, Ibadan, 2007.
Litigation, Arbitration and Alternative Dispute Resolution
Real Estate, Infrastructure and Construction
Corporate Commercial and Compliance
Member, Nigerian Bar Association
Member, International Bar Association
Member, Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria