Called to the Nigerian Bar in 1986 and enrolled at the Supreme Court of Nigeria the same year, Chief J-K Gadzama was appointed Notary Public in June 1996 and elevated to the worthy rank of a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) in 1998. His professional experience spans a vast area of adjectival/and substantive law. One of the country’s highest regarded lawyers, he has for three decades been external solicitor to several merchant, commercial, development and industrial banks; and an adviser to major multinational corporations and indigenous companies and organisations and network of individuals in Nigeria. Until recently, Chief Gadzama was a federal commissioner/board member with the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission of Nigeria (ICRC), chaired by His Excellency, Chief Ernest Shonekan, former head of Interim Government of Nigeria; board member, Diamond Pension Fund Custodian; and board member, University of Benin Governing Council.
He is registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Abuja, as a capital market consultant and was a partner in the legal consortium of Legal Advisory Partnership (LAP), comprising foreign and indigenous lawyers charged with the responsibility of providing legal services to the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) Abuja, from April 2004 to July 2007. Aside this very important assignment, he is a Legal Consultant to Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), the Secretariat of the National Council on Privatization (NCP), chaired by the vice president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Chief J-K Gadzama’s expertise is also valued internationally. His expert opinion on the nature of damages recoverable under Nigerian law was recently sought in Toulouse, France, in a litigation filed in 2015 involving one of the world’s biggest aircraft manufacturers.
He was recently appointed liquidator to wind up the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) Plc, and also provide legal advisory services for the winding-up proceedings.
Chief J-K Gadzama’s was educated at Nigerian Law School, Lagos (1986, BL); University of Maiduguri (LLB Hons, 1985); Keble College, Oxford University (2006); and London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). He was called to the English Bar (Lincoln’s Inn) in 2008, and studied at the Institute for Public-Private Partnerships (IP3) (Allington, USA, 2009).
His practice areas include litigation; capital markets; arbitration and mediation; corporate and commercial law; project finance.
He is a member of the International Bar Association (IBA); the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA); the American Bar Association (ABA); the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (UK); the African Bar Association (AFBA); the Commonwealth Lawyers' Association (CLA); the Pan African Lawyers' Union (PALU); and the West African Bar Association (WABA). He is chairman of the Vox Populi Foundation for Leadership; pioneer chairman of the NBA section on public interest and development law (SPIDEL); pioneer vice chairman of the NBA Section of Legal Practice (SLP); former chairman of the NBA Abuja branch; chairman of the board of trustees at the University of Maiduguri’s Alumni Association; chairman of the Janada International Center for Arbitration and Mediation (JICAM); and patron of Lawyers in the Media (LIM), Nigeria.
WWL says: Joe-Kyari Gadzama is “one of the very best arbitrators in Nigeria” who features prominently in our research for his “exceptional client manner” and “adroit advice”.
This biography is an extract from Who's Who Legal: Nigeria which can be purchased from our Shop.