Tag Archives: Customary Courts

The Judiciary and the Role of Customary Courts in Nigeria (Published)

Some researchers have opined that Customary Law regulates the lives of about 80% of Nigerians and that is why it is being argued that Nigerian courts should enforce Customary Laws. The Constitution of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended) has made adequate provisions for States, through their respective Houses of Assembly to establish Area and Customary Courts to hear and determine matters over persons subject to native laws and customs prevailing in the areas of their jurisdiction. These courts being close to the grassroots, citizens, can safely be referred to as grassroots Courts. It is the role of these Courts in the Nigerian legal system that this article sets out to examine. The paper also considers the applicability of Evidence Act to Customary and Area Courts and discusses whether the concept of right to fair hearing is applicable or not to these courts. The paper also examines appeals from the Customary Court

Keywords: (Criminal and Civil) Jurisdiction, Customary Courts, Evidence, Fair hearing