Tag Archives: Jurisdiction

Jurisprudential Appraisal of Nolle Prosequi in Nigeria (Published)

The Latin phrase nolle prosequi which means I do not want to prosecute or I do not want to continue to prosecute is used in the temporary or total termination of criminal or civil cases before judgment in most of the countries that are within Common law jurisdictions. This concept or practice which has its prominence now in the trial of criminal matters is the basis of the power of the Attorney-General to terminate criminal cases before judgment in Nigeria. This position of the law received its strongest endorsement in the much quoted case of Ilori v. State[1]. In this case, the Supreme Court amongst other ratios held that the Attorney-General can enter nolle as many times as he wishes over a matter and that this decision cannot be questioned by the court or any other person. We take exception to this view that the Attorney-General cannot be required to place before the court the reason for his action in the light of the clear provisions of sections160 and 191 of the 1979 Constitution of Nigeria with similar provisions as in sections 174 and 211 of the current 1999 Constitution as amended, which depart slightly from the original Common Law position of the law. This is the crux of this paper where we gave reasons why the apex court should overrule itself on the issue.

[1] S.C. 42/1982, reported in 1983) 1 SCNCR 94 or (1981) 14 N.S.C.C 69. It shall hereunder be referred to as Ilori’s Case.

Keywords: Attorney general, Common Law, Jurisdiction, Nolle prosequi

Critical Review of Adjudication and Mediation Methods of Dispute Resolution In Terms Of Time, Costs, Effectiveness and the Overall Interests of the Parties (Published)

This paper identifies the positive and negative aspects of adjudication and mediation as alternative methods of construction dispute resolution to arbitration and litigation.  Upon examination of relevant literature, judicial findings, and anecdotal evidence, it is evident that adjudication and mediation have proven to be less adversarial and more efficient and cost effective approaches to resolving disputes in the Industry.  With the recent improvements in the adjudication process, these have resulted in reducing the incidence of court hearings, and maintaining a working relationship between contracting parties for present and future project purposes.  This research information will allow parties in dispute situations to understand such aspects, and make an informed decision as to which dispute resolution process may best suit their interests, and the interests of those concerned.

Keywords: Adjudication, Adjudicator, Arbitration, Cash flow, Claim, Construction Act, Contract, Cost, Dispute, Jurisdiction, Litigation, Mediation, Mediator, Natural Justice, Notice, Scheme, Summary Judgement, Time, Without Prejudice

TRENDS IN THE CONCEPT OF ULTRA VIRES: THE NIGERIAN RETHINK (Published)

The concept of ultra vires which literarily means beyond legal capacity envisages that a company which becomes a legal personality by virtue of its incorporation cannot carry on business beyond the object contained in its Memorandum of Association. Any business so carried out by the company which is not within its object becomes ultra vires and thereby, invalid. This seeming concept as found statutory flavour under section 39 of the Company and Allies Matters Act, Cap C.20, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria,2004 with modifications to reduce the hardship it hitherto melted against third parties. It is in this wise to argue that Companies haven become an accepted part of the economic landscape, thereby enabling legislation governing corporate practice began to authorize the general purpose clause, in any case giving companies virtually unlimited powers. This has made the ultra vires doctrine to have limited relevance in the realm of corporate governance. At about the turn of the last century, courts began to recognize the unfairness of the strict application of the ultra vires doctrine particularly in two major respects. Case laws, statutes, reported and unreported cases were arrived at in reaching some basic conclusions namely that, where one of the parties had already substantially performed, the defence of ultra vires only became available where the contract was still executory. Secondly, the purposes and powers clauses were interpreted more flexibly to authorize transaction reasonably incidental to the business. Does the continued retention of the ultra vires under the Nigerian law still make any corporate sense at the turn of the third millennium?

Keywords: Jurisdiction, Ultra vires, company law, legal capacity, object clause

INVESTIGATING AND PROSECUTING INTERNATIONAL CRIMES DOMESTICALLY: RETHINKING INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL LAW (Published)

International crimes are breaches of international rules entailing the personal criminal liability of the individuals concerned (as opposed to the responsibility of the state of which the individual may act as organs). This article examines the concept of international crimes, universal jurisdiction and the accountability machineries. This article canvasses for building of local capacity for domestic prosecution of international crimes. The authors submit that internalization of justice should be the last resort

Keywords: Africa, Crimes, Genocide, Investigating, Jurisdiction, Prosecuting