ECOWAS Court lists 45 cases for hearing

The ECOWAS Court of Justice has listed forty five cases to be heard from ten Member States for the first quarter of this year.

According to the records provided by the Registry Department of the Court, the court will deliver judgements in five of the cases, give rulings on three others while the rest of the cases are for hearing.

Most of the cases are from human rights violations.

They include those filed by Djibril Bassole, who served as foreign minister under former President Blaise Compaore.

Hearing in the case filed by Nigeria’s embattled former National Security Adviser, Col. Dasuki, has been fixed for 15th March, while that filed by the former foreign minister of Burkina Faso, has been fixed for 18th March.

In another of the cases due to be heard during this first quarter, Dorothy Chioma Njemanze and three others are suing the government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, alleging that they were arbitrarily abducted, detained and assaulted – sexually, verbally and physically at different times between January 2010 and March 2013.

They alleged that the agents of the government of Nigeria comprising the Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB), the Nigerian Police, and the Nigerian Military subjected them to gender-based violence and inhuman and degrading treatment, contrary to the provisions of various international legal instruments.

They also cited the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, and the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) among the instruments violated by the government.

The matter has been slated for continuation of hearing on 18th March.

In another case, a Nigerian, Mr Obioma C.O. Ogukwe whose 15 year old son died in a swimming incident on 15th October, last year, is suing the government of Ghana, alleging the violation of his fundamental rights as enshrined in relevant sections of various international legal instruments by its failure to carry out a proper investigation and prosecution of person(s) found guilty for the alleged murder of his son.

The plaintiff submitted that the schoolmaster had taken his son in company of other students out for jogging that ended at the beach where the schoolmaster invited the students to swim. However, his son declined the schoolmaster’s invitation to swim, opting instead to play a game on phone. The boy lost his life thereafter in controversial circumstances. Hearing in the case continues on 18th March.

The cases will be heard by different panels of judges drawn from the present Members of the Court, which include Justice Maria Do Céu Silva Monteiro, president; Justice Chijioke Friday Nwoke, vice president and Justice Jérôme Traoré, dean.

Other Members of the Court are Justices Micah Wilkins Wright, Yaya Boiro, Hameye Foune Mahalmadane and Alioune Sall.