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Africa’s Legal sphere characterized by diversity – African Court

The legal sphere in Africa is characterized by diversity, African Union members implement different legal systems, different structures, and organization of the judiciary, and different oversight schemes when it comes to supervising the operation of the judiciary.

“In the justice system supervised by the African Charter and the African Court, there is a legal wealth that interpretation can tap into. When adjudicating judicial independence, contextualization demands that this mosaic of factors be kept in mind to avoid an out of context judicial law-making.”


Lady Justice Imani Daud Aboud, President of the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights stated at the ongoing fifth African Judicial Dialogue in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania which is on the theme: “Building trust in African judiciaries”.


She noted that on questions of efficiency and effectiveness of the judiciary, there is no better time to recall that the principles of complementarity and subsidiarity apply to any debate on judicial effectiveness.


“The bulk of the cases that make their way to the African Court arise from and relate to proceedings in domestic courts. So, in a sense, adjudication activity in regional judicial bodies, including the African Court, revolves around the assessment of effectiveness and efficiency of national judicial systems,” the African Court President noted.


Lady Justice Aboud urged the judicial systems and stakeholders to bear in mind that judicial dialogue will only make sense if national judiciaries are rendered more effective to make complementarity of justice more pertinent to the protection of human rights in Africa.


“On behalf of the African Court and my own behalf, I extend appreciations to the Government of the United Republic of Tanzania for the continued support afforded to the African Court as our host country.

“We thank the government and people of Tanzania for continuing to be the capital city of international human rights justice in Africa,” the African Court President stated.


The fifth Judicial Dialogue is organized by the African Court under the aegis of the African Union, as a broader platform to engage on adjudication for the benefit of the people.

It also seeks to build on previous judicial dialogues and relate to the credibility of the judiciaries in Africa.


Representatives of national supreme courts across the continent, presidents and judges of regional and sub-regional courts, representatives of the African Union, lawyers and researchers, and representatives of human rights institutions.


Dr Robert Eno the African Court Registrar explained that dialogue seeks to identify major obstacles to trust in the justice system in Africa, assess the impact of the lack of trust in the justice system on African societies, and reflect on ways and means to foster sustained trust in the justice systems.


It would also serve as platform to discuss ways and means to make the African judiciary network effective.


The delegates would also discuss, issues relating to the administration of justice, the rule of law, judicial cooperation and the protection of human rights on the continent.


Source: Ghana News Agency