Commercial Law

Mrs Kehinde Taiwo

DIRECTOR, COMMERCIAL LAW

A graduate of Law from the University of Benin where she obtained a Bachelor of Laws Degree (LLB) and a BL from the Nigeria Law School, Mrs. Kehinde.O. Taiwo joined the Lagos State Civil Service in the Ministry of Justice in 1994 as a State Counsel. She has more than 20 years of legal experience handling diverse Civil litigation and Criminal case loads.

She was in the Department of Public Prosecution (DPP) for 10 years from 1994 to 2004 where she developed as Litigation Attorney with solid knowledge of Criminal Law Procedures, critical thinking, decision-making skills and the ability to communicate efficiently both orally and in writing.

She acted as an Advocate regularly representing the Lagos State Government in motion practice, preparation of legal memoranda on litigation cases, Litigation, Deposition and conducted hundreds of trials and hearings at the Magistrate Courts, State and Federal High Courts and the Court of Appeal.

After her exposure in the Department of Public Prosecution (DPP), She had a brief stint at the Directorate of Advisory Services & Judicial Liaison (DAS) for 9 months where she was involved in proffering legal advice on petitions (Civil) received from Private persons, Corporate Organisations, Ministries, Parastatals and other establishments of the Lagos State Government as well as legal position and practical steps to be taken towards the resolution of issues raised.

Thereafter, she was posted to the Department of Civil Litigation (DCL) in 2005 as Chief State Counsel where she served for another decade. During this period, she rose to be Assistant Director and Deputy Director respectively.

In May 2015, she was on secondment to the Ministry of Physical Planning & Urban Development as Head of the Legal Department where she served for about 33 months (2 years & 9 months).  Whilst in the Ministry of Physical Planning & Urban Development, she was promoted as full Director GL 17. She worked hand in hand and in close consultation with the Office of the Honourable Commissioner, Permanent Secretary, Senior Management Staff and the various Units and Agencies of the Ministry to bring better order to the processes and procedures of all departments.

She was involved in providing professional legal advice and counsel to the Lagos State Government, instituting and defending land matters and Physical Planning cases, coordinated the effective resolution of all concerns and complaints and proactively led the Legal Unit in the assessment and address of such issues and concerns regarding Land and the people involved (both Clients and Government Officials) as part of the Lagos State Government efforts to ultimately change the public perception of the Ministry.

In February 2018, she was re-deployed to the Department of Civil Litigation (DCL) of the Lagos State Ministry of Justice as Deputy Head – Civil Litigation Directorate and in June 2019, she was posted to Head the Directorate of Commercial Law (DCL) where she is charged with the responsibility of representing Lagos State Government in commercial & contractual matters and to also ensure the provision of cutting-edge Commercial Law Services in consonance with international best practices.

Mrs. Taiwo is a member of the International Bar Association (IBA) and happily married with Children.

The Commercial Law Directorate’s core responsibility is to represent Lagos State Government in commercial and contractual matters.

Goals and Objectives

The goals of the Directorate include:

  • To be a Government Law Office with sufficient capacity in the delivery of services in areas of advice, legal opinion and drafting, without the input and collaboration of Private Law Firms.
  • To provide cutting-edge Commercial Law services through the provision of international best practices.

Key Roles and Responsibilities

The key roles and responsibilities of the Directorate include but are not limited to the following:

  1. Preparation and structuring of a diverse range of contractual and commercial agreements relating to:
  • Concessions
  • Leases/Sub-leases/Licences
  • Joint Ventures
  • Development leases
  • Power Purchase
  • Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs)
  1. Giving appropriate legal advice and opinions in respect of contractual and commercial transactions and consulting with Client Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) on issues relating to contracts and PPPs.
  2. Represent the Lagos State Government at negotiations, project meetings and inter-ministerial meetings in respect of contractual transactions, issue advice and opinions and help to structure legal agreements in this regard.
  3. Negotiating the best favourable and suitable positions for the Lagos State Government when entering into new commercial and contractual agreements.
  4. Vet Bonds and Guarantees to ensure sufficiency to cover the risk exposure of the MDAs.
  5. Dispute Resolution: Representing the Lagos State Government in the litigation of any commercial and contractual disputes that may arise and exploring other means of dispute resolution such as Arbitration, Mediation and Negotiation.

Registries under the Directorate:

There are two Registries under the Commercial Law Directorate which are:

  • Registry of Limited Partnerships (LP): The Registry is set up to register Limited Partnership businesses within Lagos State in accordance with the provisions of Part 3, Cap 139, Vol. 6 Partnership Law, Laws of Lagos State 1994. Limited Partnerships must be registered at the Limited Partnership Registry before they commence business.
  • Bills of Sale Registry: This Registry is set up to register Bills of sale (Absolute and Conditional) in line with the provisions of Bills of Sale Law Cap B2 Vol. I Laws of Lagos State of Nigeria 2003. One of the benefits of a duly registered Bill of sale is the protection of Creditors who advance money to Borrowers on the strengthof their apparent ownership of goods, against subsequent third party interest.

Achievements of the Department

In Year 2015, the Directorate achieved the following:

  1. Drafted agreements on diverse projects such as Construction and Rehabilitation projects, State Government Computerization projects and Independent Power projects. Drafted other sophisticated agreements such as Public Private Partnership Agreements and Concession Agreements.
  2. Terminated contracts as a result of contractual breaches and non performance.
  3. Obtained judgments incases relating to contractual breaches and non performance thereby recovering unexpended sums paid to Contractors.
  4. Generated more revenue to the Ministry from Agreement fees, registration of Bills of Sale and Limited Partnerships.
  5. Increasedthe public awareness of the registration of Bills of Sale and Limited Partnerships.
  6. Developing adatabase for information relating to the Directorate.
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