decision in Abacha v Fawehinmi, in which the Nigerian Supreme Court held that the African Charter cannot be superior to the Constitution and upheld. Download Citation on ResearchGate | GANI FAWEHINMI V. GENERAL SANI ABACHA AND OTHERS: JUDICIAL ACTIVISM OR. General Sanni Abacha v. Chief Gani Fawehinmi, Supreme Court, 28 April General Sanni Abacha, Attorney-General of the Federation, State Security .

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An injunction restraining the respondents, whether by themselves or by their officers, agents. Whether it is permissible for a state party to a multilateral treaty 0 promulgate municipal legislations that are inconsistent with its obligations under the treaty.

General Sanni Abacha & Ors V Chief Gani Fawehinmi

January 10 by the State Security Fwaehinmi S. Arguments were taken by the trial court on the preliminary objection during which a detention order No. Turning to the cross-appeal it is my respectful view that the Military Administration by enacting Decree No. With utmost respect to counsel, I am unable to accept this; it is an unwarranted entrustment on the plain and unambiguous provisions of the statute.

Case Abacha v. Fawehinmi

Both sides have appealed to this court: In a democratic Government under the rule of law, all judicial powers of the State are vested in the judiciary. Miller AC Clearly, the detention order, Exhibit A does not exhibit any similarity to a statutory instrument or subsidiary legislation in the manner it was made nor can it be said to be an instrument of such general application.

All in all, therefore, the appeal fails and the same is dismissed. That no warrant of arrest was shown to the applicant before and after his arrest although the applicant demanded for same. While the Decrees of the Federal Military Government may override other municipal laws.


It is the submission of appellants’ counsel that the lower court having accepted that the trial judge was right to have declined jurisdiction, the only consistent order the lower court ought to have made was one striking out the suit, otherwise if the suit was remitted to the trial court the appellants would still raise a preliminary objection under the Fundamental Human Rights Enforcement Rules Y7Y for four days not covered by the detention order, bearing in mind that ffawehinmi application was one for the entire period.

An ‘order’ as a subsidiary legislation must be abacya as a statutory instrument, for example, S. The position then is that the courts’ jurisdiction to give ‘”full recognition and effect” to the African Charter remained unimpaired.

For avoidance of doubt, the Constitution stated categorically in its chapter I. Smith 3 All E,R.

IO2 at The erosion may be creating Military or Special Tribunals …. The Constitution is the supreme law of the land: Shall, until that law is altered by an authority having power to do so.

It looks a somersault! All other expressions contained in the concurring judgments.

There is obvious contradiction there between that finding and this order. It is counsel’s further submission that the articles of the African Charter are enforceable in Nigerian courts in the same or different manner that municipal legislations similar to it are enforced: Learned cross-appellant’s counsel has urged that the phrase “if the Chief abcaha Staff is satisfied” should be interpreted to mean “if the Chief of Staff has adequate reasons in fact to be satisfied”.

Salihu Modibbo Alfa Belgore. Anderson AC as an example where the court declined jurisdiction to question the exercise of discretionary and subjective power such as the one exercisable by the Inspector General of Police. It fawehinni his further submission, relying on Vickers, Sons of Maxim Ltd. I have carefully considered all that has been said by learned counsel for the parties on the status of the Charter as an international treaty entered fawehinmj by our country.


Thus, ordinarily, a treaty binds only states parties abafha it just as a contract binds only individuals who are parties thereto. The difference between an ordinary civil contract or agreement and a treaty is that while the former is an arrangement between individuals and derives its binding ness from municipal or domestic law of a state, a treaty on the other hand derives its binding force and effect from international law.

Abacha v. Fawehinmi- Between Monism and | Gbadebo A Olagunju –

Read the Leading Judgment. By a notice of preliminary objection filed by rawehinmi present appellants as respondents in the High Court. At the oral hearing, Mr. The learned justices said in the above-quoted paragraphs from their judgments and much more that the appellants could not circumvent the effect of the African Charter as adopted by an Act in Cap. Whether the Court of Appeal having concurred with sic the decision vawehinmi the trial Federal High Court declining jurisdiction to entertain the respondents application for the Enforcement of rights guaranteed under the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights Cap 10 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria because of the procedure adopted therefore.