Wednesday, 15 June 2011


Things can happen fast, and indeed has happened fast for top corporate Lawyer and City businessman, Dr. Wale Babalakin {SAN}. This is because, for same time now, little seems to be heard about the whereabouts of or activities of the ever-busy man of substance, who no doubt has his hands in many pies viz law, construction, properties, real Estate and what have you. What are we driving at?
Following the loss of some of his properties to GT Bank few months ago over unpaid loan ruining into billions of naira, Dr. Bolanle Olawale Babalakin (SAN), seems to have summered down, or let us say the losses summered him down, on the many business engagement he used to be visibly into.
According to story then, the billionaire business-man allegedly lost one of his major properties s, a 13-storey high rise building situated on Afribank Street, Victoria Island, Lagos to GT Bank. The imposing property was said to have been forfeited at a plum price of #5.6b to GT Bank, with the deal covered by a duly perfected tripartite legal mortgage, dated 15, August 2010, executed by Stabilini Visinoni Ltd. And Buribury Ltd, (both Babalakin’s companies) in favour of GTB. The deal went on to cede the property situated at 43A Afribank Street, covered by the perfected legal mortgage, to the R.E.D. company Limited at the said #5.6billion.
GT Bank was said to have taken this proactive legal action, after all efforts to make Wale Babalakin’s company, Roygate properties Limited service the term loan facility of #9billion given him in October, 2007 failed. The news in town then was that more of Wale’s properties and assets have also been penciled down to go over default in payment of sundry loans that are humongous in amount. Let’s pause here momentarily to avoid belaboring you with what you already might have known or heard of.
The festering news now is that, suice the ordeal of Babalakin started few months ago, Dr. Wale Babalakin has virtually slowed down on many of his big time projects which most of his companies used to handle at high speed without occasioning any delay. We hear that the unfortunate situation has so much rattled the high-profile lawyer with solid pedigree, being the son of a retired supreme court Judge S.O. Babalakin, that he seems to have gone under, leaving little or no clue as to his unmediated pre-occupation . But we equally gathered that, quite characteristic to the legal luminary, he believes that things of his nature are normal, and when they do, the wise thing to do is to retreat, go back to the drawing board, before launching back in fuller force to remedy an otherwise ugly situation. The fact however remains that the Senior Advocate of has gone under and has been missing in his usual restless business activities.

Gbolahanadetayoblog can tell you authoritatively that this will not be the first time the battled attorney will be faced with such a debacle; and he swiftly and masterfully came out of it. Years ago when he was clamped into detention, or was it prison? By the tyrannical government late Sani Abacha, over similar financial malpractice and discrepancies, over came out bolder, stronger and more aggressive in most of his businesses. He was then incarcerated in far-away Port Harcourt in Rovers State. Just before he was clamped, Wale has just bought over the stabling visinioni Limited , a full-fledge Italian construction company, following the then indigenization act. But from far-away Port Harcourt, where he was cooling effect, Wale was still able to hold forte, as his junior brother Tayo, a young ABU trained architect and other top managers, with were still able to complete some contracts which were on-going as at the time of his arrest and subsequent detention. High-rising buildings ( office and residential) in Bourdillon, Osborne, Bishop Oluwole and many more in Ikoyi, Lagos were all done with in good time. The most spectacular of the projects then was the one carried out for billionaire industrialist, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, was the massive one at the Apapa Wharf, where over 5,000 workers were working day and night to meet up with completion date. Architect Tayo Babalakin, on Mr. Akinbaye and an Italian Director called Mariano were all on ground intermittently supervising this grand project without any hitch.
Unfortunately, that was the period Abacha died and Wale naturally regained his freedom. Pronts, he went into action to regain full supremacy of his empire, and till then till date, he has nurtured it to the enviable height it is today now, before this latest encounter. Within a short time, he bounced back and became a recurring decimal in most pies he has his hands in. far and even beyond this, not a few believed he was carrying out most of these big time projects on borrowed funds, and the fact that he was not able to repay this loans as and when due, has now become his undoing. Alas! His creditors went after him. But as a lawyer, a senior advocate for that matter, one should have expected him to know better; that a loan taken without fulfilling the obligations of repayment, has four-reaching implications of collaterals being confiscated. Under the Bi-Courtney Group of Dr. Wale Babalakin are Stabilini Visiononi Ltd, Bunbury Limited (purptedly the parent company of Roygate), Wale Babalakin & Co 9 a firm of solicitors and advocates), amongst many others, are said to be the money-spinning machines of the first-class lawyer , who attended prestigious Kings College, Lagos, went to the University of Lagos to study law, then to the Nigerian law school, Victoria Island , Lagos, and out with flying colour. After his NYSC, he left for London to bag the LLM and capped it up with a PHD in law at under 30; then was made a Senior Advocate of Nigeria at a very young age, probably between 49 and 42. He launched into full time practice and within a short stunt in practice he was able to spread his tentacles into other sectprs of the economy. He was also for a short time the special Adviser on Legal Matters to the late President Umar Musa Yar’adua. He is to a sweet lady called Gbolahan, who prefer to live in her husband’s shadows, and they are blessed with lovely children. Last year, Wale clocked 50 and the birthday was celebrated in a high-octane level where big stars like D’baj and the rest came to perform for him live, and Wale was reported to have enjoyed himself to the brim, dancing with his wife so youthfully to the stars’ music in the presence of very important personalities and top-notch government functionaries, foreign partners, friends, colleagues and families.
Today, the case is different, as Wale seems to have withdrawn into his shell, given the multitude of indebtedness and unfulfilled obligations, which he could not fulfill. So, can this be typical of Dr, Wale Babalakin, who is not known to do this thing in small measures, fixing and securing contracts of monumental scales. The newly-refurbished Domestic wing of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Lagos, and another 5-star hotel in its precinct are some of his last jobs before the unexpected happened. We even scooped that the reconstruction and widening of the Lagos-Ibadan expressway was given to his company. Dr. Bolanle Olawale Babalakin must have surely underground to recoup, restrategise and refire. The coming day will reveal all these.

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