JUST IN: Belgore, Retired Appeal Court Judge Dies at 70

A retired Justice of the Court of Appeal, Ahmad Olarewaju Belgore, has died.

Belgore, who is a younger brother to former Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Alfa Belgore, died in his GRA residence, Ilọrin, Kwara State capital, on Tuesday night.

He was the presiding Justice of the Ilorin Division of the Court of Appeal before his retirement.

He was also a former Chief Justice of the Gambia.

It was gathered that the deceased broke his Ramadan fast with some family members on Tuesday night in anticipation of Eid-ul-Fitr but died about two hours later.

“He was not sick and even broke his last Ramadan fast with family members on Tuesday night. The whole incident happened in less than two hours. I think his time was up”, the source who refused to make any further comment on the issue, said.

Among his last public engagements was the Fidau held for the late District Head of Ballah, Alhaji Salman Olarongbe Abdulkadir, at the Emir’s Palace last week Sunday.

He retired as the Justice of Court of Appeal on 18th April 2023 on attainment of the age of 70.

His Janazah has been scheduled for 4:00 pm on Wednesday at the Belgore’s family compound, Isale Ajanaku, Ilọrin.

In his condolence message, Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq described the deceased jurist as a legal giant and foremost community leader.

“The Governor sends his heartfelt condolences to the entire Ilorin Emirate whose illustrious son the jurist was, to the bar and the bench, and to the Belgores who have lost a rare gem.

“Justice Belgore was a legal giant and a foremost community leader who offered his shoulder for many to lean on“, the Governor said.

Governor AbdulRazaq asks Allah to forgive his shortcomings, admit him to al-jannah Firdaus, and give fortitude to the Belgores and everyone who mourns him.

Similarly, the Emir of Ilorin and Chairman Kwara State Traditional Rulers Council, Mai-Martaba Alhaji Ibrahim Sulu-Gambari described his demise as a big loss to the Ilorin Emirate and nation at large.

In a statement to mourn him issued by his spokesman, Mallam Abdulazeez Arowona, the Emir said, “This is a great and colossal loss that has befell the Ilorin Emirate and humanity at large. ”

“Inna ilaihi waina ilaehi raji’un, it is with shock that I received the news of his demise. He was a complete gentleman, a thorough judicial officer who served the nation meritoriously in various capacities and nationally and internationally.

 

“He was one of the finest justices that the Ilorin Emirate has ever produced and contributed in no small measure to the growth and development of the judiciary and humanity in general.”

 

The Emir commiserates with the entire Belgore family, immediate and extended family members of the deceased as well as the entire people of Ilorin and Nigerians in general over the great loss.

 

He prayed that Almighty Allah accept his good deeds, forgive his shortcomings and admit him into Al-janatul firdaos.

Brief Profile

The last jurist was born on 18th April 1953 and studied Law at the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria where he bagged LL.B. (Hons.) with Specialization in Islamic Law from 1975 to 1978. He was at the Nigerian Law School, Victoria Island, Lagos (Barrister-At-Law (BL) 1978/79 Session and was enrolled at the Supreme Court of Nigeria as a Solicitor and Advocate of the Supreme Court of Nigeria in July, 1979.

Records revealed that the late jurist was appointed as a Notary Public in 1987 and later served in various capacities such as Judge of the High Court of Justice, Kwara State from August, 1990 to 2006, Resident High Court Judge, Offa Judicial Division of Kwara State August, 1994 to September, 1999 as well as Chairman, Special Tribunal Miscellaneous Offences in Abuja.

He was also on secondment to the Judiciary of the Republic of the Gambia and appointed as Justice of Appeal, Gambia Court of Appeal and was later elevated to become the acting Justice of the Supreme Court of the Gambia, a position he held up to December 2005.

Late Ahmad Belgore was appointed as Justice, Court of Appeal, Nigeria on 27th April, 2006 and Sworn in on the 8th June, 2006 and was posted to become the Presiding Justice, Sharia Panel of the Court of Appeal in 2008 and by 2015, he was appointed as Presiding Justice of the Court of Appeal and posted to Ekiti Division.

Appointed Member, Body of Benchers of Nigeria, October, 2015. Appointed Life Bencher, February, 2021 and finally retired on 18th April 2023 at the age of 70.

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