Katsina-Alu, former CJN, dies

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A former Chief Justice of Nigeria, CJN, Aloysius Iyorgyer Katsina-Alu, has died at the age of 76.

He reportedly died in the wee hours of Wednesday at Chida Orthopaedic Hospital, Gudu, Abuja.

While confirming his death, media aide to the incumbent CJN, Mr. Awassam Bassey, said the news was relayed to the Chief Registrar of the Supreme Court by Katsina-Alu’s aide.

Bassey however told newsmen that his principal, Justice Walter Onnoghen, who is currently attending a conference in Canada, had yet to hear about the ex-CJN’s demise.

According to him, “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 organized 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 was from Ushongo local government area of Benue state.

He succeeded Idris Legbo Kutigi as chief justice of Nigeria in December 2009.

He was sworn in by Kutigi because former president Umaru Yar’Adua, who was ill at the time, had failed to hand over to his deputy, Goodluck Jonathan.

Katsina-Alu remained in the position until August 2011 when he was succeeded by the late Dahiru Musdapher.

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