Leading oil and gas lawyer, Mr. Lucius Ezeakamadu Nwosu SAN “passed onto glory peacefully in his sleep” in Abuja last Tuesday, his family has said. He was aged 69 years. The announcement confirms CITY LAWYER exclusive report that the leading lawyer has passed on.
Announcing the passing of the foremost oil pollution and environmental rights lawyer in a trending post titled “Transition Announcement” obtained by CITY LAWYER, a family representative, Mr. Akandu Emmanuel Nwosu wrote: “With hearts filled with grief but with gratitude to God for a purpose-driven and impactful life, we announce the death of our dear father, husband, brother, uncle, cousin, confidant and family head, Lucius Ezeaka Nwosu, SAN, who passed onto glory peacefully in his sleep on Tuesday the 6th of April, 2022 in Abuja FCT at the age of 69.
“We request prayers for his family and ask that their privacy be respected at this time. Burial arrangements will be announced by the family.”
A post on his University of Nigeria Enugu Campus 1976 alumni platform obtained by CITY LAWYER read: “BREAKING… Am distressed and in tears. Why do such things happen?! Can’t still believe it that Papa Doc is gone to the great beyond. He passed this morning. Hate to be a bearer of bad news. Na so we see am.”
Another post read: “LUCIOUS (sic) NWOSU SAN, may your soul rest in peace.” It would seem that his classmates nicknamed him “Papa Doc.”
A source who is a classmate of the fiery lawyer had confirmed the sad news to CITY LAWYER, saying the news was originally broken by a judge who is also a classmate of the foremost oil pollution claims expert allegedly nicknamed “Lucifer Nwosu” by international oil companies for being a thorn in their flesh in his many legal battles for compensation for polluted oil-bearing communities. He stated that three members of the class have been mandated to visit his wife.
Nwosu was lately entangled in a face-off which wrought a crisis within the Legal Practitioners Disciplinary Committee (LPDC), leading to the resignation of its chairman and two members due to alleged meddlesomeness by the Body of Benchers.
This also led him to petition the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) President, Mr. Olumide Akpata in a letter dated February 17, 2022 urging him to impress on leading lawyer, Chief Wole Olanipekun SAN “to refrain from bidding for the Chairmanship of the Body of Benchers failing which, the Bar should politely withdraw his candidacy.”
Continuing, he wrote in the four-page letter: “Mr. President, I do not have anything to gain or lose personally by Chief Olanipekun SAN remaining in or becoming Chairman of the Body of Benchers, but I would rather not be your goodself as president and alter ego of the Nigeria Bar Association, when this tragic circumstances will be ascribed to your tenure. Hence this urgent note of caution.”
It was unclear whether Akpata responded to Nwosu’s petition. However, the Body of Benchers brushed aside the controversy to elevate Olanipekun to the position of Chairman of the elite body.
Born on January 30, 1953 into the Nwosuagwunwanguma Family of Uhuala, Udo in Ezinihitte Mbaise Local Government Area of Imo State, he studied law at the University of Nigeria, Enugu Campus, graduating in 1980.
Listed in NIGERIA’S TOP 100 LAWYERS compendium, Nwosu was admitted to the Nigerian Bar in 1981. He took silk in 2004 and was a member of the Legal Practitioners Privileges Committee (LPPC) between 2005 and 2011.
He was the Principal Partner of Messrs Lucius Nwosu (SAN) & Partners, a Port Harcourt based full-service law firm. Prior to the establishment of his law firm, Nwosu had a stint with the Chambers of Dr. J. I. J. Otuka, formerly a UNN law teacher.
Nwosu has been involved in many high stakes and complex oil pollution cases. As Lead Counsel to some Ogoni communities, he secured N45.9 Billion compensation from Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC). He also secured N37.6 Billion award against the Federal Government in a lawsuit instituted by the Odi community of Bayelsa State for victims of the military invasion of the community on November 20, 1999. Nwosu also secured N81.9 billion oil pollution compensation for some oil-bearing communities in Akwa Ibom against Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) and Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited.
He was Counsel to the former Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Aloysius Katsina-Alu in the headline-grabbing lawsuit brought by erstwhile President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Ayo Salami challenging his suspension by the National Judicial Council (NJC).
According to his profile in NIGERIA’S TOP 100 LAWYERS, “Nwosu has several legal publications to his credit. He is the author of Litigation: Useful Tips on Effective Case Management (2003). He had been invited by the Council of Legal Education (CLE) to develop a position paper on Oil and Gas Law as part of the activities marking its 10th anniversary.”
Nwosu was married to his wife, Nneka. The marriage was blessed with children.
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