• Tuesday, November 28, 2023
businessday logo


Christopher Ogunbanjo, lawyer, philanthropist, dies at 99


Christopher Oladipo Ogunbajo, corporate lawyer, businessman and philanthropist, is dead. He died at the age of 99.

The family announced his death in an official statement.

“We give thanks to the Almighty God for the glorious and blessed life of our dearest Father, Grandfather, Great Grandfather, and patriarch of the Ogunbanjo family of Erunwon, Ijebu-Ode, Papa Christopher Oladipo Ogunbanjo OFR, CON, who transitioned peacefully into eternal glory this evening, surrounded by his beloved family, in his centennial year.

Papa was an unwavering beacon of reassurance, courage, and moral integrity for the entire family, truly embodying dedication and service to his country.

His departure is profoundly felt by us all, and as such, we humbly request your prayers. We kindly ask for understanding and respect during these initial days of mourning, as we wish to grieve privately.

The family will share information regarding his obsequies, the venue for condolence visits, and visiting hours in due course, ” the statement read,

Christopher Oladipo Ogunbajo was born on December 12th, 1923 in Ijebu Ode, Ogun State, Nigeria.

He attended St. Phillips Primary School, Aiyetoro, Ile-Ife before proceeding to Oduduwa College, Ife for his secondary education in 1936. In 1938, he moved to the prestigious Igbobi College in Lagos where he completed his secondary education. He obtained a degree in law in 1949 and was called to bar a year later in 1950.

Chief Ogunbanjo began his Legal Practice in 1950 as a Partner in a law firm then known as Samuel, Chris & Michael (made up of the late Chief Samuel Akintola, former Premier of Western Nigeria, Chief Christopher Ogunbanjo and late Justice Michael Odesanya) whose offices were situated at Tinubu Square in the heart of Lagos.

Chris Ogunbanjo married Hilda Ladipo in 1953.

After the dissolution of the partnership in 1960, he created Chris Ogunbanjo & Co; a commercial law firm considered to be the building platform for many successful luminaries in Nigerian legal practice.

Ogunbanjo  was instrumental in the Nigerian legal, corporate, industrial and management practice.

He was  appointed “Retainer-Solicitor” to the NIDB Project by the Federal Government and International Finance Corporation.

He was an early advocate of domiciliary accounts in Nigeria, which later came to existence through the promulgation of the Foreign Currency Decree 18 of 1985.

In the late 1960s, he was among the group of businessmen who supported local equity participation in foreign firms operating in Nigeria.

He was also part of several top companies such as West African Batteries, Metal Box Toyo, Union Securities, 3M Nigeria, ABB Nigeria, Roche Nigeria and Chemical and Allied Products Limited.

He held the national awards of Commander of the Order of the Niger (CON) and Officer of the Order of the Federal Republic (OFR)