He was appointed a Judge of the National Industrial Court in 2000 for an initial period of four years although with eligibility for a renewal for a further term of four years. In June 2004, having completed the first term, his appointment for another term of four years was renewed. With the passing of the National Industrial Court Act, 2006, he is now a tenured Judge of the Court.
Professor Kanyip trained as a lawyer at Ahmadu Bello University Zaria and the Nigerian Law School, Lagos, Nigeria. After a one-year national service he took up a teaching appointment as a lecturer in the Department of Commercial Law at his alma mater in 1987; and rose to the position of Lecturer II before leaving in 1992 for the National Commission for Colleges of Education as Legal Adviser in the rank of Principal Legal Officer.
In 1995, he was appointed Senior Research Fellow by the Nigerian Institute of Advanced Legal Studies and rose through this appointment to the rank of Associate Research Professor of Law in 2000 when he joined the Court. Professor Kanyip is the author of numerous journal articles in the areas of consumer law, tax law, labour law and commercial law. He is the author of the book, Consumer Protection in Nigeria: Law, Theory and Policy (2005) and a joint author of the text, Elements of Commercial Law (1994). Professor Kanyip recently concluded a study for the design of a Draft Labour Policy and StrategicPlan of Action for the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS). Before then he carried out a review of all the labour laws in Nigeria at the behest of the International Labour Organisation (ILO); and was subsequently nominated by the Federal Government of Nigeria as one of its two nominees in the Technical Committee for the reform of all the labour laws in the country.
The outcome of this work was formally presented to the Federal Government in May 2005 and is now before the National Assembly. Professor Kanyip was a member of the Ministerial Panel on the crisis in some Federal Government Educational Institutions. He was also on the National Mirror Committee on Social Responsibility set up by the Standards Organization of Nigeria (SON) under the auspices of the Federal Ministry of Industries. Professor Kanyip is member, Nigerian Bar Association, Fellow, Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria, Life Member and Deputy President II, Nigerian Society of International Law. He is a contributing editor of several academic law journals..