Hon. Justice Muhammadu Lawal Uwais sat on the Supreme Court Bench for 27 years out of which he presided over the court as the Chief Justice of Nigeria for 11 years. As at today no justice of that court has spent close to three decades on that apex court bench in Nigeria. He was the first Chief Justice of Nigeria to retire at the age of 70. Before retiring from the Supreme Court Bench, Justice Uwais worked with not less than 54 Justices of the court.
The legacy left behind by this great jurist on the apex judicial bench still remain indelible through his several landmark decisions at the apex court between 1979-2006 as aptly put together in the book titled :Uwais Through Cases edited by the late Chief Gani Fawehinmi. During his tenure he fought gallantly against the disease called corruption in the judiciary. He was at various times awarded with several laurels for his selfless service and contribution to the nation and judiciary in particular. In 1980 he was conferred with the National Award of Commander of Order of Niger (CON) while in 2000 he was again awarded the Grand Commander of the Order of Niger (GCON). Between 1993 and 1994 he served as the Chairman of the Body of Benchers. In 1971 he became a Fellow of the United Nations Human Rights while in 1997 he became the Honorary President of the World Jurists Association, Washington D.C, United States of America. In 2000, Justice Uwais became Honorary Life Fellow of the Society for Advanced Legal Studies, London, United Kingdom.