A former Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Aloysius Katsina-Alu, has died at the age of 76.
His death was disclosed on Wednesday By the office of Chief Justice of Nigeria, Walter Onnoghen.
Katsina-Alu from Ushongo in Benue State, who was born on August 28, 1941, was the CJN from December 30, 2009 to August 28, 2011.
The Senior Special Assistant to the CJN on Media, Mr. Awassam Bassey, confirmed his demise in a statement while the present CJN Onnoghen was in Canada.
The statement read, “A few of our colleagues have called this morning (from about 3:30am Montreal Canadian time) to seek confirmation of the death of former Chief Justice Katsina-Alu.
“I can confirm that the Chief Registrar of the Supreme Court, Mrs. Hadizatu Mustapha, sent me a WhatsApp message to that effect about an hour ago confirming the death of the former CJN.
“I have just called the Chief Registrar to confirm that this is indeed the situation. That the Personal Assistant of the former CJN called her at 3.00pm Nigerian time to inform her of the demise.
“However, it’s 3:30am here in Montreal, Canada, where His Lordship the Honourable Chief Justice of Nigeria, Hon. Mr. Justice Walter Samuel Nkanu Onnoghen, GCON, and other Justices of the Supreme Court and Chief Judges of some states, are attending a conference organised by the International Society for the Reform of Criminal Law, and I haven’t yet contacted the Hon. CJN for his reaction.
“I hope to do that as soon as he wakes up and get his reaction.”
Katsina-Alu’s tenure as the CJN was overshadowed by his controversial battle with the then President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Ayo Salami (retd).
Salami was later controversially suspended by the National Judicial Council, a decision Katsina-Alu was believed to have hugely influenced.