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  • Author: Charles Manga Fombad, Enyinna Nwauche
  • Publication Date: 01-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: African Journal of Legal Studies
  • Institution: The Africa Law Institute
  • Abstract: A fundamental tenet of modern constitutionalism is that nobody, regardless of his status in society, is above the law. Constitutional reforms in the 1990s saw the introduction in many African countries of constitutions which for the first time provide some prospects for promoting constitutionalism and respect for the rule of law. This article reviews the extent to which these reforms have addressed the issue of presidential absolutism and the abuses that go with it. It examines some of the factors that made African presidents to be so powerful that the conventional constitutional checks and balances could not restrain their excesses. It also reviews the attempts to limit impunity through immunity provisions. It concludes that unfortunately, the 1990 reforms did not adequately address the problem of presidential absolutism. A number of ways, nationally and internationally, in which presidential accountability could be enhanced and the culture of impunity ended is suggested.
  • Topic: Law, Reform
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Author: Jean-Paul Gagnon
  • Publication Date: 01-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: African Journal of Legal Studies
  • Institution: The Africa Law Institute
  • Abstract: The extant literature covering indigenous peoples resident on the African continent targets colonial law as an obstacle to the recognition of indigenous rights. Whereas colonial law is argued by a wide body of literature to be archaic and in need of review, this article takes a different route and argues the perspective that colonial law is democratically illegitimate for ordering the population it presides over – specifically in Africa. It is seen, in five case studies, that post-colonial public law structures have not considered the legitimacy of colonial law and have rather modified a variety of constitutional statutes as country contexts dictated. However, the modified statutes are based on an alien theoretical legality, something laden with connotations that hark to older and backward times. It is ultimately argued that the legal structures which underpin ex-colonies in Africa need considerable revision so as to base statutes on African theoretical legality, rather than imperialistic European ones, so as to maximise the law's democratic legitimacy for both indigenous and non-indigenous Africans.
  • Topic: Law
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Author: Mtendeweka Mhango, P. Thejane
  • Publication Date: 01-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: African Journal of Legal Studies
  • Institution: The Africa Law Institute
  • Abstract: Recently the Industrial Court of Swaziland was faced with a complaint in Mngadi v Motor Vehicle Accident Fund's Pension Fund, which raised two important issues of first impression in Swaziland retirement law. This note discusses the significance and effects of Mngadi on provisional registration of retirement funds in Swaziland. It argues that Mngadi should be welcomed because it clarifies the significance of the need for retirement funds to operate in accordance with their registered rules. The note also discusses the problems with the Registrar's power to issue a provisional certificate of registration under Section 5 in light of the problems that emerged in Mngadi. The note argues that Mngadi should be welcomed because it highlights the characteristics of a defined benefit fund, and implicitly distinguishes it from a defined contribution fund. While Mngadi should generally be welcomed, the Industrial Court should be criticised for its failure to develop the law.
  • Topic: Law
  • Political Geography: Swaziland
  • Author: Muhammed Haron
  • Publication Date: 01-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: African Journal of Legal Studies
  • Institution: The Africa Law Institute
  • Abstract: Shamil Jeppie, Ebrahim Moosa and Richard Roberts (Eds.), Muslim Personal Law in Sub-Saharan Africa: Colonial Legacies and Post-Colonial Challenges. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2010. ISBN: 978 90 8964 172 4, 388 pp.
  • Topic: Islam, Law
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Author: Stuart S. Yeh
  • Publication Date: 01-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: African Journal of Legal Studies
  • Institution: The Africa Law Institute
  • Abstract: The World Bank and IMF attribute underdevelopment in sub-Saharan Africa to the practice of directing economic activity through centralized planning. They prescribe privatization and economic liberalization to restructure African economies, promote competition, reduce the scope for corruption, and promote good governance. However, inadequate checks on political power permit African elites to subvert these reforms. This article reviews the political economy of sub-Saharan countries as well as a case study of Sierra Leone to illustrate the problem. The analysis suggests the need for an international agency such as the UN to provide the capacity to investigate, expose and check corruption by employing UN inspectors who are immune to pressure from powerful African elites. This type of check on corruption is necessary to promote the rule of law in sub-Saharan Africa.
  • Topic: Economics, United Nations, Law
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Publication Date: 01-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: African Journal of Legal Studies
  • Institution: The Africa Law Institute
  • Abstract: We are pleased to announce that as of Volume 4, Issue 1, 2011, the African Journal of Legal Studies (AJLS), will be published by Martinus Nijhoff. AJLS, a peer-reviewed and interdisciplinary journal, began in 2004 as an online publication under the auspices of The Africa Law Institute, and the editorship of its president, Charles Jalloh. the six issues which comprise the back volumes of the Journal, (Vols. 1-3) are now available online and free of charge at: brill.nl/ajls. Subscribers wishing to receive these issue in print should contact the Publisher; a fee will be charged for this service. AJLS accepts online submission only, using Editorial Manager (EM), an online submission and peer review tracking system which is currently used worldwide by over 3000 journals. Editorial Manger allows authors to track the progress of their submission online. Via the EM website for the Journal, authors are guided step-by-step through the submission process. The system automatically converts all source files of the article to a single pdf that is then used in the peer-review process. All correspondence between editors, authors and reviewers proceeds via e-mail. We are confident that this will greatly facilitate the process of submission, peer review and final publication and kindly invite you to register online at: editorialmanager.com/ajls.
  • Topic: Law
  • Author: Charles C. Jalloh
  • Publication Date: 01-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: African Journal of Legal Studies
  • Institution: The Africa Law Institute
  • Abstract: On behalf of the Editorial Board, I am pleased to present issue 4.1 of the African JournalofLegal Studies (AJLS) under a new and exciting partnership with Martinus Nijhoff, the renowned Dutch publisher. On the occasion of our first print edition, I would like to express my most sincere gratitude to all the authors who have submitted manuscripts to A]LS for publication consideration. This special issue on international criminal law aims to contribute to, and to further stimulate, the growing debate on the place and nature of international criminal accountability for all those bearing the greatest responsibility for international crimes in Africa's numerous contemporary conflicts. While unable to accept every submission, the three peer-reviewed articles selected for this first print issue of the journal confirm the original thinking and high quality we are confident will continue to be this journal's hallmark. Consistent with our new partnership, the journal is pleased to announce that we will publish three issues. We also inaugurate a new look both in our electronic and print formats. Electronically, arrangements are now in place for all the journal's back issues as well as our new content to be available on our new website at brill.nl/ajls. We hope that the many databases associated with Martinus Nijhoff will give our published contents and authors truly global circulation in this age of Internet, Facebook and Twitter.
  • Topic: Law
  • Political Geography: Africa