Category Archives: Know your Rights

Court sets aside order for forfeiture of Sen. Nwaoboshi’s properties

The Federal High Court on Monday set aside an interim order for the forfeiture of the properties of Peter Nwaoboshi to the Nigerian government.

The judge, Taiwo Taiwo, in his ruling on Monday overruled the earlier order by the same court because “due process of law” had not been followed.

Continue reading Court sets aside order for forfeiture of Sen. Nwaoboshi’s properties

California Prosecutors: Michael Avenatti to be Indicted on 36 Counts


The Department of Justice and Internal Revenue Service on Thursday will announce a 36-count grand jury indictment filing against disgraced television lawyer Michael Avenatti.
The agencies will discuss the indictment at a press conference at 9:00 a.m. local time, a joint statement reads.

The announcement comes after Avenatti appeared in a Santa Ana courtroom April 1 after being charged with filing false tax returns to secure $4 million in bank loans and withholding $1.6 million from a client.

After a court appearance Monday, Avenatti said he’s long represented “Davids versus Goliaths” in the same justice system in which he now faces charges.
The Department of Justice and Internal Revenue Service on Thursday will announce a 36-count grand jury indictment filing against disgraced television lawyer Michael Avenatti.
The agencies will discuss the indictment at a press conference at 9:00 a.m. local time, a joint statement reads.

The announcement comes after Avenatti appeared in a Santa Ana courtroom April 1 after being charged with filing false tax returns to secure $4 million in bank loans and withholding $1.6 million from a client.

After a court appearance Monday, Avenatti said he’s long represented “Davids versus Goliaths” in the same justice system in which he now faces charges.
Breitbart.

Change of Name Is A Constitutional Right

by             O. G. Chukkol.

It is not unusual for people to change their names in Nigeria. The reasons behind that are diverse. Changing of name is hardly a problem since it mostly falls within private affairs of individuals.

But one cannot rule out the possibility of issues arising from such change of name or attempt to change the name. For instance: in some work places, restrictions are placed on the specific names that can be changed or even prohibit the change of name completely; most schools including universities do not permit change of name once admitted as student etc

This article seeks to state the law as it relates to legality or otherwise of institutions, organizations, places of work etc prohibiting their staff or students from changing their names.

In NMCN v. ADESINA (2016) LPELR-40610(CA), Kehinde Yekini was a nurse. After marriage and conversion to Christianity, she changed her name to Mrs Esther Bose Adesina. Nursing And Midwifery Council Of Nigeria (NMCN), a body responsible for the granting and renewal of nursing license refused to renew her license with her new name but rather renewed same with her old name. NMCN claimed that their rules and policy prohibits changing of names except surname. In fact, for males, change of name is totally prohibited without an exception. She approached Court for the enforcement of her fundamental rights to Religion and freedom from discrimination. The court gave judgement in her favour and nullified that policy. The Court reasoned as follows:

“It is my considered opinion, a Nigerian and indeed any person entitled to change his name not only for marital purposes but also for religious purposes especially in a country like Nigeria both male and female can change their name for instance a Christian, Abraham can chose [sic]to be Ibrahim, a Muslim or vice versa if the interpretation or decision of the Respondent is to be conceded to then there would be a discrimination that only females can change but their maiden name, but not their whole names. There is no Law that says a female cannot change all her names. To that extent, I hold that the appeal has merit and this Court is prepared to strike down that provision of the guideline as being unconstitutional.”

NMCN appealed but they did not succeed. The Court of Appeal affirmed the decision above. The Court while agreeing with the learned judge that delivered the judgement at the Federal High Court Asaba held that:

“The Appellant never challenged the deposition that her change of name was consequent upon becoming a Christian.… it is pursuant to her constitutional right of freedom to change her religious belief that the Respondent became a Christian with the consequent change of name,… “Names are meant not only to identify. In Nigeria names are borne for a variety of reasons some for ethnic, religious reasons as well as circumstances of birth. In the instant case where the reasons advanced for the change of the names are religious and marital, the names are interwoven with the fundamental rights to practice religion of her choice and not to be discriminated against on that account. Section 42(1) of the 1999 Constitution…”

This case has laid to rest any likely controversy over this topic. Without peradventure, a Nigerian can change his name if he so wishes. Any other law or policy that prohibits change of name shall be null and of no effect.

                    ADDENDUM

Cases are authorities only on what they decide. This case has not laid a blanket principle to be applied in all circumstances. For a person to enjoy the unfettered right to change his name anywhere and anytime in Nigeria, he must connect same to one of the rights in chapter IV of the constitution. Else his action may fail.

The rights in chapter IV of the constitution are not absolute, they can be derogated by the operation of section 45 of the constitution. In other words there are circumstances where the courts may give effect to a particular law that prohibits change of name even if the reason for the change of name has connection with a particular right in chapter IV of the constitution.

It should be noted however that the burden is on the person relying on section 45 to establish that the law he is relying upon to prevent someone from changing his name is justifiable in a democratic society. See Abdulkareem V Lagos State Government (2016) 15 NWLR (pt. 1535) 177

                          ✍

                O. G. Chukkol,

                      Student,

              Faculty of Law,

                    ABU, Zaria.

        oliverchukkol@gmail.com

                 08032470318

            27th December, 2018

8 offences that can land someone in jail under the NYSC Act

The resignation of Nigeria’s Minister of Finance as a result of the controversy surrounding her National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) certificate has put the  NYSC  Act on the spotlight.

Courtroom Mail in refreshing our memories has published this article in plain language to accommodate every reader. Continue reading 8 offences that can land someone in jail under the NYSC Act

Eight ways you may go to jail in Nigeria because of marriage

Marriage in Nigeria is a serious business regulated by two main laws; the Marriage act and the Matrimonial causes act. The laws provide almost exhaustively, protections for parties to a marriage.   However, like any other law, people will continue to be creative in finding   ways around it and such creativity can land one in jail. In some cases, one need not even be a party to the marriage to become liable.

The marriage act provides for the following offences that can lead a party or a third party to jail in the cause of celebration of a marriage. Anthony Atata , a Nigerian lawyer whose practice covers divorce and family Law writes in a plain language for readers of Courtroom Mail who are not lawyers.Eight of the most common offences are as follows:[restrict paid=”true”]  Continue reading Eight ways you may go to jail in Nigeria because of marriage

If you want a divorce from a Nigerian Court,you must prove any of these

For a court in Nigeria to grant divorce to a party to matrimonial proceeding, it must be on the ground that the marriage has broken down irretrievably.Anthony Atata writes for Courtroom Mail(This is written in plain language for the benefit of ALL readers of courtroom mail)

For the Petitioner (the person who filed for divorce) to satisfy that the marriage has broken down irretrievably, he or she must prove one or more of the following:[restrict paid=”true”] Continue reading If you want a divorce from a Nigerian Court,you must prove any of these

How to validly refund or reject a bride price in Nigeria-What the Law says

This content is written for the numerous Courtroom mail readers who are not lawyers so will be devoid of any Jargon.

In most part Nigeria,payment of bride price is a thing of pride to the woman and could be a stigma to woman who co-habits with a man who did not pay her bride price.The bride price is indeed the pride price in many customs.

Two types of marriages are recognised under the Nigerian Law. Statutory Marriages (ie marriages in a licenced place of worship or in the registry popularly called court marriage in Nigeria) and customary marriages (popularly known as Traditional marriage) Continue reading How to validly refund or reject a bride price in Nigeria-What the Law says

Premium Content: If you see this Clause in your tenancy agreement, please don’t sign

Many people do not pay attention to the clauses in their tenancy agreements. The truth is that, you don’t need to but when you don’t, make sure your lawyers do. If this doesn’t happen, you may be in for a big embarrassment like so many tenants out there who have been embarrassed just because they did not study the tenancy agreement given to them by their landlord.

 

Before I continue, if you see the clause [restrict] “FIXED TERM” in your tenancy agreement, please run as fast as your legs can carry you. Do not sign.

WHAT IS THE FIXED TERM?

In describing the duration of your tenancy, the landlord may slip in the clause “fixed term” or “Fixed term certain” into the contract and if you sign it, it has consequences.

WHAT ARE THE CONSEQUENCES?

If FIXED TERM is used to describe your tenancy, it simple means that your tenancy expires at the end of the first year of your rent without an implied right to renew. It does not qualify you for the second year or make your rent recurrent.

It denies you the advantages that come with being a periodic tenant of 1year,6months, monthly etc. In other words, you are neither a yearly tenant, quarterly tenant nor a monthly tenant but a tenant with fixed term.

Periodic tenants are usually protected under the law by the duration of quit notice to be issued to them but tenants with fixed term certain are not entitled to it.

For example, Usually, a landlord is required to issue a Six months’ notice if he wants to eject a yearly tenant from his house, a week’s notice for a weekly tenant, three months’ notice for a quarterly tenant, three months’ notice for a half yearly tenant.

However, in the case of a tenancy for a fixed term, no notice to quit is required. After the term has expired, what the landlord is required to do is to give the tenant a 7days notice in writing that he intends to go to court to recover his property. After the seven days, he will go to court and obtain an order to eject the tenant.

So, next time you are given a tenancy agreement to sign, make sure you look at it properly before you sign. Many landlords and their lawyers are using this to keep tenants humbled.

Hope this premium content added value to you? If you have any question to ask, do not hesitate to do that in the comment section. We will answer you.[/restrict]