September 18, 1925
LAW AND ORDER|
1940 - 1944|
Chief Judge (rtd)|
Born on Sepember 18, 1925 at Ilesa, Eso attended Ilesa grammar School 1940-1944 and led the classes throughout, except on one occasion, when placed in the second position. Emmanuel Araka was a Colleague of his both at IGS and at Trinity College, Dublin.
AWARDS AND UNIVERSITY HONOURS:
1949: Michaelmas Examination (Reid Professor) Prize in Constitutional Law
1950: Criminal Law Prize
1952: Dublin University Law Society: Legal Composition Silver Medal (This is the only award made on such events to the best candidate in an external examination arranged by the Society in Legal Composition).
1953: (June) Graduated with a Degree of Bachelor of Laws.
1953: (October) Moderatorship in Legal Science. (that is Graduated BA (Honours Degrees)
1954: (November) Called to the English Bar by the English Council of Legal Education
1954: (December) Called to the Nigerian Bar.
1956: Admitted to the M.A. Degree (Trinity College Dublin).
NATIONAL HONOURS AND OTHERS
1979: Awarded National Honours by the Federal Government of Nigeria: Commander of the Order of the Niger (C.O.N.) The 4th Highest National Honour in Nigeria.
1990: Honoured with an LL.D honoris causa by the premier University of Nigeria, i.e. University of Ibadan, to mark my retirement from the Bench and public service. The citation covered my private and public life.
2001 Honoured with an LLD honoris causa by the University of Nigeria, Nsukka
1965 March – September Acting Judge of the High Court Western Nigeria
1967 - 1975: Justice, Court of Appeal, Western Nigeria.
Nov. 1975 - June 1976: Acting President of the Court of Appeal.
June 1976 - Dec. 1977: First Chief Judge of Oyo State, Nigeria, following the creation of the State as one of the States in the Country.
1st Jan. 1978 - 18th Sept.1990: Justice of the Supreme Court of Nigeria (the highest Court in the land).
THE NIGERIAN GRUNDNORM – NLP 1986
THOUGHTS ON LAW AND JURISPRUDENCE M.I.J. Publications, 1991
ANATOMY OF JUSTICE/: OGUN STATE UNIVERSITY PUBLICATIONS - 1991
THE MYSTERY GUNMAN: SPECTRUM 1995.
FURTHER THOUGHS ON LAW AND JURISPRUDENCE: SPECTRUM 2003
Various Papers - over one hundred, delivered at National and International Seminars and University fora.
1988 –1989: Vice Chairman, Body of Benchers. (Body of Nigerian Lawyers and Judges)
1989-1990 Chairman, Body of Benchers
1989-1990: Chairman, Committee on Corruption and other Economic Crimes.
1993: Chairman, Committee of Pro-Chancellors/Committee of Vice Chancellors’ Sub-Committee on Crisis in the Nigerian Universities
Dec. 1993 – June 1994: Chairman Judicial Panel on the Reorganisation/Reform of the Judiciary in Nigeria. (The Committee produced a Report that indicted 47 Judges on corruption and allied offences) Pro-Chancellor, University of Benin 1991 - 1993
1991-1998 Pro-Chancellor, University of Benin.
1976 - Date Chancellor, Anglican Diocese, Ilesa.
1990 - Date Chairman, Christian Laity of Nigeria.
1990 - Date Chairman, Trinity College Dublin Alumni Association.
INTERNATIONAL ORGANISATIONS AND ASSIGNMENTS:
MEMBER: African Centre for Democracy and Human Rights Studies, Based in Banjul, The Gambia. 1989 –1995
CHAIRMAN: African Centre for Democracy and Human Rights Studies, 1995 to date
CHAIRMAN: Legal Research and Resource Development Centre 1991 to date.
CHAIRMAN: Negotiation and Conflict Management Group. 1995 to date.
Participation, before the lifting of apartheid, at a Seminar in Maghaliesburg, near Johannesburg, South Africa, on the invitation of the ANC/University of Witswatersrand, to debate the Post-Apartheid Constitution, on the issue of a Constitutional Court for South Africa. Undertook missions, thereafter, while in South Africa, for the Federal Government in company of a Nigerian top Diplomat, to meet with Nelson Mandela, just released from prison, Buthelesi and De-Clerk, in Pretoria – Held meetings with Buthelesi’s "Cabinet" at Ulundi, Zululand: Held meetings with South African judges (No Black Judges at that time) on the Importance of taking judicial side with Human Rights.
Participation at a Seminar in Durban, South Africa, at the invitation of the ANC/University of Durban to debate the Human Rights provisions that might go into the Post Apartheid Constitution for South Africa. Undertook Missions thereafter for the Federal Government of Nigeria, to meet top functionaries of the Apartheid Government and top black politicians.
Attendance at the Independence celebration and Installation of Nelson Mandela as First President of Post Apartheid South Africa.
On the Invitation of the OAU and the International Commission of Jurists:
Cape Town South Africa, as Member, Legal Experts Committee for the drafting of the Protocol of the African Charter to enable the establishment of the African Court on Human and Peoples Rights. (Eleven such Legal Experts were chosen by the Organisers from the entire Continent) I have been involved, ever since then, for quest to establish the African Court for Human Rights.
PRIAR, CAPE VERDE: Meeting of Human Rights NGOS’ at the forum organised by the International Commission of Jurists: Attended in my capacity as Chairman of the African Centre: Also attended meetings of the African Commission on Human Rights. Various travels every year, since 1989, to the Gambia to attend to the African Centre for Democracy and Human Rights Studies.
Nominated in December 1995 by the International Commission of Jurists, As Member of US Mission to Investigate “EQUALITY BEFORE THE LAW IN CAPITAL PUNISHMENT SENTENCING" The Investigation and Report were completed in June 1996 and have since been published by the ICJ.
1997: Arranged and participated at a Seminar in Banjul, The Gambia, on the Platform of the African Centre for Democracy and Human Rights Studies on "Checks and Balances In A Democracy".
1998: Arranged and participated at a Seminar in Mauritius, in the Indian Ocean, on "The Independence of the Judiciary".
2003: INTERNATIONAL BAR ASSOCIATION: Appointed by the International Bar Association to observe the trial of the Criminal charge against Justice Blackie in Zimbabwe.
ACTIVITIES SINCE RETIREMENT FROM THE BENCH:
1990 - date: (i) LEGAL CONSULTANCY: Giving Legal Opinions
Requested by multinational Corporations, including Oil Corporations in Nigeria.
(ii) ARBITRATION - Proceedings between -
a. Legal Personalities inter - se
b. Corporations and Government/Government Agencies;
c. Multinational Corporations
d. Multinational Corporations and other legal personalities
(iii) Lectures on Current and Human Rights Issues.
1990 - date: Member Advisory Board: The Journal of the Nigerian Law.
1994 - date: Member, Executive Advisory Board: Lawyers' Bi-Annual.
1994 - date: Chairman, Advisory Board: The Journal of the Nigerian Law.
1990 - date: Life Member, Body of Benchers Nigeria.
1991 - 1998: Chairman, Board of Directors, International Breweries Plc, Ilesa.
1994 - 1999: Director, First Inter-State Merchant Bank Ltd,
1995 - Date: Chairman, Board of Governors, Bodija International College, Ibadan.
1998 - Date: President, Association of Chartered Institute of Arbitrators of Nigeria
NOTABLE HONOURS BY OTHERS:
Over forty receptions following retirement from the Bench, organised by individuals and Institutions including:
Two Seminars (1991) one of which has resulted in the publication Of a book: “Law Justice and Stability in Nigeria – Essays in Honour of Justice Kayode Eso Ed. Akinseye – George, 1993.”
PUBLICATIONS IN HIS HONOUR;
1990: Justice Eso: Supreme Court Years (1978-1990) His Notable Pronouncements: NLP 1990
1991: Akinseye George: Essays In Honour of Justice Kayode Eso (1991)
1995: Tunde Fagbohungbe: The Judicial Universe of Justice Kayode Eso. Deovotrics Communications Ltd. (1995)
1998: Yemi Akinseye – George: Justice Kayode Eso & The Challenge Of Substantial Justice: John West Publications (1995) 2002: Prof. Ade Ajayi & Akinseye George: Kayode Eso The Making of A Judge
Establishment by an admirer, of an Annual Prize in perpetuity known As JUSTICE KAYODE ESO PRICE IN PROFESSIONAL ETHICS, – Nigerian Law School. The prize pays highest at present in the Law School.
Prize in Jurisprudence University of London: Best Student in Jurisprudence Annual Prize.
MARITAL STATUS: Married to Helena Aina Eso (Nee Agidee) - January 16th, 1954, with two Children, One (male) an Architect, the other (female) a Lawyer and Banker. There are five Grand Children.