In Nigeria, Cordia sebestena (Boraginaceae), an understudied medicinal plant, is used in traditional medicine for the treatment of gastrointestinal disorders. In this study, we investigated the chemical composition, antibacterial potential, and sub-acute toxicity of C. sebestena leaves.Ethyl acetate extracts were analyzed using thin layer chromatography (TLC) and Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectrophotometry. The antibacterial potential of the extracts was tested against five standard bacteria, namely Bacillus cereus, Bacillus subtilis, Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Clinical observations and blood parameters were used to evaluate the possible toxicity of C. sebestena.The TLC profile yielded 39 fractions, which were pooled to nine combined sub-fractions (A-I). The FTIR spectrum of sub-fraction H indicated the presence of aliphatic C-H stretching vibration at 2922 and 2850 cm-1, C=O stretch at 1734 and 1708 cm-1, and C=C stretch of aromatics and aliphatics at 1464 and (shoulder) 1618 cm-1, respectively. The fractions of the C. sebestena ethyl acetate leaf extract showed antibacterial potential across board, but fraction H had the highest antibacterial activity against B. cereus and S. aureus. The study also indicated the relatively low toxicity profile of the ethyl acetate leaf extract of C. sebestena in the liver of rats.The study showed that C. sebestena leaves have strong antibacterial potential and low toxicity, thereby underlying the scientific basis for their folkloric use in the management of microbial infections and its associated complications.