Born on 14th June 1963 at Gboko, in Gboko Local Government of Benue State, Anthony Aondoakaa Ijohor, Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), is a Professor of Law in the Department of International Law and Jurisprudence, Faculty of Law, Benue State University, Makurdi, Nigeria. This thorough bred scholar of the legal profession with a training profile which spans Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigerian Law School, Lagos, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom, Benue State University, Makurdi and Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States of America, was until his appointment, the Dean, Faculty of Law Benue State University, Makurdi.
Professor Anthony Aondoakaa Ijohor, alongside His Excellency, Samuel Ortom, began his educational career at St. John’s Primary School, Gboko in 1970. Between 1975 and 1980 Tony studied at the prestigious Mount St. Gabriel Secondary School, Makurdi where he obtained the West African School Certificate (Division One). He laid the path for a fulfilling academic career in his preferred discipline, Law with a Bachelor of Laws Degree (LL. B) at the Ahmadu Bello University Zaria, in 1985. Destined to teach, young Ijohor spent the mandatory one year National Youth Service corps lecturing in the Faculty of Law at the same University. Between 1987 and 2007 Tony, as he is fondly called by friends and associates, returned to Benue his home State where he settled for private practice. Through his sound, thought provoking, meticulous and professional handling of cases, the relatively young Ijohor was conferred with the rank of Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), by the Legal Practitioners and Privileges Committee, on 16th December, 2008. Within the period also, Ijohor vigorously pursued his academic dream emerging with a Master of Laws (LL.M) Degree in 2004, (Master of Science, International Relations and Strategic Studies, M.SC) in 2009 and Doctor of philosophy (PhD) in 2011.
Upon his resignation as Special Adviser to the Governor of Benue State, following his conferment with the rank of Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Tony’s appointment as part-time lecturer in the Department of Commercial and Property Law, Benue State University was converted to a tenured one. His scholarly worth was recognized by the Baze University, Abuja when in June 2013, this inspiring academic was appointed Professor and Dean by the Council and management of the University, to help build a formidable Faculty of Law in the University.
However, the strong urge to contribute to the growth and development of his State University, compelled Professor Ijohor in 2016 to return to Benue State University, Makurdi where he continued with his academic career. Upon his return colleagues in the Faculty unanimously settled for Professor Ijohor as the new Dean. He has since settled down to the rigors of the office and both staff and students within this short period are full of praises for his proactive approach to issues concerning the Faculty.
Outside the academia, Professor Tony Ijohor, SAN, who is the principal partner, A A Ijohor, SAN, and Co, has continued to offer landmark services as Barrister and Solicitor of the Supreme Court of Nigeria. A man with an uncanny sense of generosity and social disposition, Tony parades as a great philanthropist and socialite. He has served the government and people of Benue State variously in different capacities as member, Benue State Judicial Service Commission, 2005-2007, as well as Special Adviser to the Governor on Investment, 2007-2009.
Tony is a member of several professional bodies including Nigeria Bar Association where he served as Chairman, Makurdi Branch between 2004 and 2006, International Bar Association, Institute of Transnational Arbitrators, United States of America, USA, as well as member, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, United Kingdom.
He is married to a charming legal luminary, Hon Justice Jennifer Mbalamen Ijohor, of the Benue State High Court and together they have a son, Henry Terlumun Ijohor, a Law Graduate of University of Surrey, United Kingdom, who is currently in the Nigerian Law School.
Call him a legal luminary you will be right, call him a scholar, you are certainly right, call him a humanist you are sure right. Call him a philanthropist, you would be right, better still call him a socialite, you can’t be wrong.
It is without prejudice to the above ‘résumé’, that the Governor of Benue State, Samuel Ortom, has found Anthony Aondoakaa Ijohor eminently qualified to serve the state as Secretary to State