Posted by News Express | 5 May 2014 | 6,080 times
Maverick entertainer Charly Boy (real name Charles Oputa) has revealed the circumstances under which his father, retired Supreme Court Justice Chukwudifu Oputa, died yesterday afternoon in Abuja.
He said in an SMS sent to journalists: “The family of Justice Chukwudifu Oputa wishes to announce the passing to glory of the eminent jurist and a retired Justice of the Supreme Court of Nigeria at the age of 96 years.
“He passed on peacefully on Sunday afternoon May 4, 2014, after recovering from a brief illness. Funeral announcements will be released by the family.”
Charly Boy, who is Justice Oputa’s eldest son, also confirmed that his father had been down with stroke and apparently died of cardiac arrest.
News Express had last night reported that the eminent jurist had been on the watch list since he was rushed to the hospital on February 14 after being struck by partial stroke.
While Charly Boy quoted 96 as his late father’s age, his official age was 89, his biography indicating that he was born on September 22, 1924 in Oguta, Imo State to Chief Oputa Izukwu and Madam Nwanetu Oputa.
Popularly acknowledged as a philosopher and nicknamed Socrates, Justice Chukwudifu Akunne Oputa excelled both at the bar and bench. His private practice ended in 1966 upon his appointment as Judge of the High Court of the then Eastern Nigeria. He became the first Chief Judge of Imo State upon its creation from the defunct Eastern region in 1976 and was appointed Justice of the Supreme Court of Nigeria in 1984, retiring in 1989.
The late Oputa was appointed chairman of the Human Rights Violations Investigation Commission (HRVIC) – popularly referred to as the Oputa Panel – set up on June 8, 1999 by then president Olusegun Obasanjo, which investigating rights abuses in Nigeria since independence in 1960.
A dedicated family man who remained dedicated to his wife Margaret till his death, Justice Oputa published over 40 papers in lectures, conferences and seminars.
A devoted Catholic, he was a Knight Commander of St. Gregory the Great, Knight Commander of St. Sylvester Pope, and Knight of St. Mulumba. He held the national honour of Commander of Federal Republic (CFR).
•Photo shows late Justice Oputa with Charly Boy.
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