African Court launches law report

Accra The African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights has launched the First Volume of the African Court Law Report in Arusha, Tanzanian to ease the challenges of access to its case law.

The African Court Law report, covers all judgments, including separate and dissenting opinions, advisory opinions, rulings, decisions, procedural orders and orders for provisional measures delivered by the Court between 2006 and 2016.

Justice Sylvain Ore, African Court President told the Ghana News Agency in an interview that, each of the cases in the Report included a brief summary of the case together with key words and corresponding paragraph numbers that indicated the exact paragraph in the judgment where the Court discussed the highlighted issues.

He said a subject matter index highlighted the various subjects that the cases dealt with, adding that, Considering that the Continental Court has not had any law report since its establishment, the publication of this Volume is a significant milestone.

The African Court President said, This volume covers decisions from 2009, the year the Court delivered its first judgment, up to 2016. However, the years of coverage as indicated on the cover is 2006-2016, in recognition of the fact that 2006 was the year the Court was established with the election of the first judges and the holding of its First Ordinary Session.

He said even though, as in current practice of the African Court, decisions on lack of jurisdiction due to the Respondent not having filed an Article 34 (6) Declaration would be administratively handled by the Registry without a judicial decision, all such early decisions were included in the present Report.

Justice Ore explained that the rationale was to provide the readers, especially researchers, with a comprehensive practice of the Continental Court over its first decade of adjudication.

Each case has a headnote setting out a brief summary of the case followed by keywords indicating the paragraphs of the case in which the Court discusses the issue. A subject index at the start of the report indicates, which cases discuss a particular issue.

This index is divided into sections on general principles and procedure, and substantive issues.

The African Court Law Report includes 67 decisions on Human and Peoples’ Rights. Decisions in respect of the same case are sorted chronologically and grouped together, for example, procedural decisions, orders for provisional measures, merits judgments and reparations judgments.

A table of cases setting out the sequence of the decisions in the Report is followed by an alphabetical table of cases.

The report also includes a subject index, divided into sections on procedure and substantive rights. This is followed by lists of instruments cited and cases cited. These lists show which of the decisions include reference, in the main judgment, to specific articles in international instruments and case law from international courts and quasi-judicial bodies.

Each case includes a chapeau with a brief summary of the case together with keywords and paragraph numbers where the issue is discussed by the African Court or in a separate opinion.

Source: Ghana News Agency