Top 10 Richest SANs and Lawyers in Nigeria

The richest SANs and lawyers in Nigeria include Wale Tinubu, Abubakar Malami, Afe Babalola, and Femi Falana. Many of these Senior Advocates of Nigeria (SANs) and lawyers earn from different sources, including law, oil and gas, banking, and other business ventures.

Nigeria has a record of over 620 SANs and millions of lawyers. The profession is known for having different salary structures, but being a SAN comes with better financial benefits. Also, in line with the profession, other top earners are lead associates, principal associates, the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), and the attorney general of the Federation. Regardless of these, some lawyers have gone out of the norm to earn from numerous sources.

Here Are Nigeria’s 10 Richest SANs and Lawyers 

10. Femi Falana (SAN)

  • Date of Birth: 20 May 1958
  • Age: 66 years old
  • State of Origin: Ekiti State
  • Net Worth: $80 million
  • Schools Attended: St. Michael’s School; Sacred Heart Catholic Seminary; University of Ife
  • Firm: Falana & Falana chambers

Femil Falana is arguably the most famous human rights lawyer in Nigeria. He is also one of the richest and most influential SAN. He started his career since the 1980s and worked at the Alao Akala Bashorun and Co. law firm and later founded the Femi Falana law firm. Subsquenty, his firm became Falana & Falana Chamber with his wife, Funmi Falana, as a partner.

Falana, who is also known as singer Falz‘s father, is known to have served numerous Nigerians. Some of his renowned clients are Fela Kuti (and the Kuti family), Omoyele Sowore, and the Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors.

Besides being a legal practitioner, the SAN is into politics. He was an aspirant at the gubernatorial elections of Ekiti State in 2007.

Falana is also a member of many professional bodies. Some of them include the West African Bar Association, West African Bar Association, Pan African Lawyers Union, and Member, International Bar Association.

He is a graduate of St. Michael’s School and Sacred Heart Catholic Seminary where he obtained his primary and secondary certificates. He attended the University of Ife (now Obafemi Awolowo University) Ile Ife, Osun State, where he obtained a degree in law.

9. Gbenga Oyebode 

  • Date of Birth: 30 March 1959
  • Age: 65 years old
  • State of Origin: Ekiti State
  • Net Worth: $120 million
  • Schools Attended: University of Pennsylvania, University of Ife, and Harvard University
  • Firm: Aluko & Oyebode

8. Wole Olanipekun (SAN)

  • Date of Birth: 18 November 1951
  • Age: 72 years old
  • State of Origin: Ekiti State
  • Net Worth: $122 million
  • Schools Attended: Ilesa Grammar School, University of Lagos
  • Firm: Wole Olanipekun and Co.

Wole Olanipekun obtained his West Africa School Certificate at Ilesa Grammar school before moving on to the University of Lagos. He is one of the richest lawyer in Nigeria. In 1976, he was called to Bar and in 1991, he became a SAN and has once held the position of the President of the Nigerian Bar Association.

He also reached the position of an Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice of Ondo State. Other positions that he has held that have contributed to his wealth include serving was the Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of Governing Council of the University of Ibadan and as the Principal Partner of Wole Olanipekun and Co.

7. Adewunmi Ogunsanya (SAN)

  • Date of Birth: 1960s
  • State of Origin: Lagos State
  • Net Worth: $250 million
  • School Attended: University of Kent, University of Lagos
  • Firm: Ogunsanya & Ogunsanya

Adewunmi Ogusanya is a renowned Senior Advocate of Nigeria and a businessman. He is a University of Kent and the University of Lagos graduate.

As a legal practitioner, he started at Ogunsanya & Ogunsanya in 1986 where he currently serves as head of the litigation unit. He became a SAN in 2016.

Ogunsanya has a specialty in different fields, including Real Estate, Intellectual property, insurance, and Oil and Gas. All of these and more have contributed to his $250 net worth. Moreso, he is a board member of Heritage Banking Co Ltd. and the boss of multichoice – owners of DSTV and GOTV.

6. Wale Babalakin (SAN)

  • Date of Birth: July 1, 1960
  • Age: 63 years old
  • State of Origin: Oyo State
  • Net Worth: $260 million
  • School Attended: Sacred Heart Private School; Government College, Ibadan (GCI); The Polytechnic, Ibadan; University of Lagos, and Corpus Christi College at Cambridge University
  • Firm: Babalakin and Co.

Born Bolanle Olawale Babalakin to a retired Justice of the Supreme Court of Nigeria, Wale Bolanle also grew up to become a legal practitioner. Through this, he has accumulated a $260 million net worth.

He has also risen to the position of SAN and Officer of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (OFR). His started his career in 1986 and later founded his firm called Babalakin and Co.

Away from this, the Ibadan-born lawyer is also a businessman and founder of Bi-Courtney Limited, and the chairman of a construction firm. Over the years, he has held several positions. Some of these include being the Pro-Chancellor of the University of Maiduguri and being a member of the National Political Reforms Conference.

With respect to his education, Babalakin attended The Polytechnic, Ibadan, University of Lagos, and Corpus Christi College at Cambridge University.

5. Abubakar Malami (SAN)

  • Date of Birth: 17 April 1967
  • Age: 57 years old
  • State of Origin: Kebbi State
  • Net Worth: $500 million
  • Schools Attended: Usmanu Danfodiyo University; University of Mainduguri; Nassarawa Primary School, and College of Arts and Arabic Studies

Malami is a prominent Senior Advocate of Nigeria who is also a politician. He served as a Minister for Justice and Attorney-General of Nigeria from November 2015 to May 2023. In 2015, at the time of his first appointment, Malami became the youngest minister in Muhammadu Buhari’s cabinet.

Before then, the former minister had several jobs that include working as a state counsel and magistrate in Kebbi State. He also worked at K.T. Turaki & Co.

Prior to that, he obtained a law degree and master’s degree in public administration from Usmanu Danfodiyo University and University of Maiduguri. Other schools he attended are Nassarawa Primary School and College of Arts and Arabic Studies in Kebbi.

4. John Olatunde “Tunde” Ayeni

  • Date of Birth: April 4, 1967
  • Age: 57 years old
  • State of Origin: Kogi State
  • Net Worth: $600 million
  • School Attended: Ahmadu Bello University
  • Firm: Legal Resources Alliance
Tunde Ayeni
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Olatunde Ayeni’s net worth is estimated at $600 million. Before he became rich and famous, he went to Baptist Secondary School in Iyah-Gbede in Ijumu, Kogi State. He also went to Kwara State Polytechnic, and later the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria.

He was called to Bar in 1991, marking the beginning of his career. In the earliest days of his career, he worked at Rodco Nigeria Limited as well as Professor A. A. Adesanya & Co. Shortly afterward, he founded his own firm, Olatunde Ayeni & Co, which later became Legal Resources Alliance.

He is the chairman of Skye Bank and the vice chairman of Integrated Energy Distribution and Marketing Ltd (IEDM). He is also a majority stakeholder and vice chairman of ASO Savings & Loans.

Adeniyi sits on the board of several companies. They include JKK Plc and Temple Resources Ltd and PPP Fluid Mechanics Limited and Hightech Procurement Limited.

3. Afe Babalola, CON, OFR, SAN 

  • Date of Birth: 30 October 1929
  • Age: 94 years old
  • State of Origin: Ekiti State
  • Net Worth: $650 million
  • School Attended: University of London; London School of Economics, Wolsey Hall, Oxford
  • Firm: Afe Babalola & Co.
Richest SANs and Lawyers in Nigeria
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Afe Babalola is a famous Nigerian lawyer and educationist, also known for being the founder of Afe Babalola University. He also worked at the Central Bank of Nigeria. These and more have contributed to his $680 million net worth.

His career as a lawyer started at the Olu Ayoola and Co. Law Firm as a litigation lawyer. He later founded his own law firm, Afe Babalola and Co. In 1987, he became a senior advocate of Nigeria and in 2001, he became a Pro-Chancellor of the University of Jos.

Before making it big and becoming one of the richest lawyers in Nigeria, he attended several schools. He is a graduate of London University. He also attended the London School of Economics and was called to the England bar in 1963.

2. Adewale Tinubu 

  • Date of Birth: 26 June 1967
  • Age: 56 years old
  • State of Origin: Osun State
  • Net Worth: $700 million
  • School Attended: Federal Government College, Odogbolu; University of Liverpool; London School of Economics; Nigerian Law School
  • Firm: K. O. Tinibu and Co.

Wale Tinibu is often regarded as the richest lawyer in Nigeria. He makes his wealth from different sources, including being a business executive and lawyer.

As a lawyer, he started his career in 1990 and later co-founded Ocean & Oil Group. He is currently a chief executive of Oando PLC – a Nigerian multinational energy company.

Prior to when he became a notable lawyer, Wale, who is the nephew of the Nigerian president, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, went to different schools. He went to Federal Government College, Ogbulu, for his secondary education and later the University of Liverpool. He also went to Nigerian Law School and obtained a master’s degree from the London School of Economics.

1. Jimoh Ibrahim 

  • Date of Birth: 24 February 1967
  • Age: 57 years old
  • State of Origin: Ondo State
  • Net Worth: $800 million
  • Schools Attended: Obafemi Awolowo University (LLB, MPA); Harvard University (LLM/IT); Cambridge University (DBA)
  • Firm: Global Fleet (conglomerate)

Jimoh Ibrahim’s net worth is estimated at $800 million. He earned his fortune mainly from being a lawyer, politician, and businessman. More to this, he was elected as the senator of the Ondo South Senatorial District in 2023.

Most of his wealth comes from his being the chairman and chief executive officer of Global Fleet Group – several subsidiaries in West Africa. Some of these subsidiaries are Air Nigeria, Nicon Luxury Hotel, Energy Bank, Accra, and Newswatch Magazine.

With respect to his education, he attended Obafemi Awolowo University in Ile Ife, Osun State (LLB; MPA) and Harvard University USA (LLM).

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