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Sep 22, 2015

Intestate Succession in Nigeria: What is the Status of Children Born Out of Wedlock?

It is no longer unusual in Nigeria for a deceased who was married under the Marriage Act to have children out of wedlock. Whenever instances such as this arise, one of the major issues, which crops up is, who amongst the children of the intestate person are entitled to apply for letters of administration in respect of the estate of the intestate person. This is because by virtue of section 24 (1) of the Administration of Estates Law, Laws of Lagos State, Volume 1, CAP A3, the maximum number of persons who can apply for letters of administration is 4 (Four).

Our law reports are replete with cases where children of an intestate person who were born within wedlock were up in arms against children born outside wedlock in respect of the modalities for applying for letters of administration for their late parent’s estate.


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The CCB was established in Nigeria in 1979 during the Second Republic after 13 years of military rule by the founding fathers of the first post-military constitution. The 1979 Constitution provided a list of Codes of Conduct for public officers. In essence, the CCB was established for the purpose of addressing issues relating to the conduct of public officers during their tenure of holding office, also especially to fight corruption in the public service.

The Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act, Chapter 58 LFN 1990 gave the Bureau the mandate to establish and maintain a high standard of public morality in the conduct of government business and to ensure that the actions and behaviour of public officers conform to the highest standards of public morality and accountability. The Bureau’s constitutional mandate as provided for in the 1999 Constitution is to:

Sep 15, 2015


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In the past few decades, Arbitration has become a mainstay in resolving legal disputes. There are a plethora of articles which showcase the advantages of Arbitration while ignoring or simply giving a brief outline of the inherent dark clouds or cons of Arbitration. A closer look at the recent trend of inserting the Arbitration clause; one needs to wonder; Is Arbitration really the best mode of dispute resolution? This is a question which has plagued my mind.

As previously mentioned Arbitration has been promoted by many profound authors, article writers, and bloggers worldwide as an efficient way to resolve disputes. The advantages of Arbitration are once again outlined as follows:
1.     Avoids hostility. Because the parties in an Arbitration are usually in agreement to the Arbitration clause and are encouraged to participate fully and sometimes even to help structure the resolution, they more often together peaceably rather than escalate their angst and hostility toward one another, as is often the case in litigation.

Sep 14, 2015


With Government’s intervention and investment in the Nigerian aviation sector through, among others, the ongoing rehabilitation works at different airports, improvement of navigational facilities, planned floating of a national carrier, provision of airline intervention fund to domestic operators through the Bank of Industry, the Nigerian aviation sector has considerably regained public confidence. Demand for domestic air travels and patronage of Nigeria airlines operating regional and international routes is on the increase. To take advantage of the upsurge, several airline operators are taking steps to increase their fleets and expand their operations and in some cases, cater for new regional and international routes. In view of the prohibitive cost of aircraft acquisition however, practically all the operators are turning to one lease instrument or another. The most common lease options in acquiring an aircraft are operating lease and finance lease.
Of major importance in the choice of lease options by airline operators are tax obligations and benefits. Under the Companies Income Tax Act, Cap C21, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2005 (“CITA”), these two types of lease attract different tax incidences in relation to Capital allowance, Withholding Tax, Value Added Tax, Capital Gains Tax etc. The considerations for the choice of lease option by operators however do not change the concerns of Lessor and financiers, mostly foreign aircraft manufacturers, leasing companies and operators whose due diligence and security requirements are usually detailed and wide-ranging.


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The relevant legislation that regulates taxation matters for individuals
in Nigeria is the Personal Income Tax Act (“PITA”). A Nigerian employer acting as an agent for the Nigerian tax authority is required to deduct and account for the personal income tax of its employee through the Pay-As-You-Earn (PAYE) system.

Best of Judgment Assessment is a tax assessment procedure conducted by tax authorities on the accounts of a company or individuals. It is usually done where the tax payer does not provide any Audited Accounts or Statement of Net-worth if it is an individual. It can also be conducted if the tax authorities have reasons to believe the accounts presented by the tax payer is not sufficient enough to assess their tax liability.

Sep 12, 2015

Customer Care: A Wake Up Call by Chika Maduakolam

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I am not a people person! There, I said it! You may wonder why the dramatics; simply put, it’s something I have found difficult to admit openly as most people in my immediate environment see me as a social butterfly and erroneously conclude I am very friendly. Enough said.

For those slightly acquainted with any of my previous articles, you should already be aware that I will not be making any groundbreaking discoveries or juxtaposing some highfalutin (never understood this word!) ideology to change the world; I will simply be following the course of the ramblings of my mind and the above paragraph is only prelude for the rambling of today: I weep for the state of Customer Care in Nigeria.

Sep 10, 2015


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Everything Starts with Reputation
The greatest injury in the life of a man is the injury to his reputation. I have restricted the category to the living because a dead man has no reputation which is enforceable at law. The right of a man to protect his reputation is a personal right. Such right dies with a man upon his death. No action can be commenced or continued upon the death of the injured party. The only recognized exception however is where the injury to a dead man’s reputation has negatively impacted his estate. Even then, it is more appropriate to ground the claim in malicious falsehood than defamation. In any case, redress in the circumstance can be sought by the personal representatives of the deceased (executors or beneficiaries the estate) subject to other legal requirements.

The respect (and protection) for a person’s reputation is sacrosanct. It is as fundamental as the freedom of expression against which it is the burden of the law to balance. This is because a man whose reputation is destroyed has lost not only money or other valuables but everything! That is why, for instance, in Nigeria, injury to reputation is both actionable as a civil wrong and a crime which is punishable by terms of imprisonment. In both cases, the injury to reputation is called defamation. The criminal aspect of defamation is not the focus of this piece. That will be taken care of on another day by a separate exposition of the eight sections under Chapter 33 of the Criminal Code Act Cap 77 LFN 1990.


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One of the sacred liberties of man is the liberty to move freely. Unless where legitimate exception is permitted by law, any limitation on a man’s liberty to move freely is an infringement on his fundamental right. In Nigeria, such infringement is actionable either as a common law tort called false imprisonment or as a breach of constitutional right of personal liberty guaranteed under Section 35 (1) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (Third Alteration Act) to the effect that “Every person shall be entitled to his personal liberty and no person shall be deprived of such liberty save in the following cases and in accordance with a procedure permitted by law”. It should be stated clearly that different procedures of enforcement apply in pursuing a case of false imprisonment and a constitutional right enforcement for unlawful detention. In this piece, no distinction is made between false imprisonment and unlawful detention except where such distinction is necessary for clarity.


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Marriage is a universal institution which has been in existence from time immemorial. It can be traced as far back as the very creation of man and is considered to have spiritual, moral and social significance in society. It is therefore revered as sacred and thus heavily guarded by various religions, traditions, social norms and laws alike .

In Nigeria, the sanctity of marriage cuts across all regions of the country regardless of culture and religion. The major types of marriages that existed in the pre-colonial era were the cultural/traditional marriage and the Islamic/Maliki marriage. The type of marriage practice was determined by the prevalent traditions or religions which governed the society where the parties live in or where they originated from.

Sep 8, 2015


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I assume not very many people will be able to say yes to the above question, some do not even know why I should ask such a question, others on the other hand do not even realise that they should be getting  a pension. Statistics show that a number of organisations are not contributing to the pensions of their staffs as mandated by law in Section 1 of the Pension Reform Act 2014.

The law provides that –

Sep 7, 2015


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Air travelers in Nigeria oftentimes have been cheated by airline operators by delays without explanation, loss of baggage and unruly behaviour from both on-ground and cabin crew members just to name a few. Most Nigerians go through these hurdles everyday without the simplest apology from the airlines.

Many airline passengers are not conscious of the fact that they can be helped by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) when airlines infringe on their rights especially issues regarding delayed flights.

Sep 3, 2015

OPINION: The Imperativeness of Justice in Nigeria: Fact or Fiction? by Arikor Ogonnaya

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 "Do for others what you want them to do for you: this is the meaning of the Ancient Laws of Moses and the teachings of the prophets." (Matt. 7:12. Good News Bible.)

Retribution and reparation remain the two principal concepts behind establishing any criminal justice system. The final end, cause or design of men, who naturally love dominion and liberty, is the introduction of some restraint upon them, the ultimate purpose which is for the preservation of their lives. Man is miserably entangled in the web of deliberate amity, such that if left to his noxious whims, he might inevitably self-destruct.


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The justice system in Nigeria has been plagued with several factors which have contributed to the slow and unsteady grinding of the law especially as regards criminal matters. These factors which seemed institutional have led to the propositions of various strategies for reforming the ailing system of administration of justice in Nigeria. Gladly, the Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015 has brought those reforms to the fore.
For the purposes of criminal jurisdiction, Nigeria is divided into the North and the South. The criminal justice system in the north was based on the provisions of the Criminal Procedure Code (CPC) while the south had its criminal administrative system based on the Criminal Procedure Act (CPA). However the Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015 merged the Criminal Procedure Act (CPA), Criminal Procedure Northern State Act 2004 and CPC into one principal Federal Enactment to apply to all Federal Courts across the federation.


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The words of the then Speaker of the Nigerian House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Aminu Waziri Tambuwal at the public hearing of the bill for the enactment of the administration of Criminal Justice Bill vividly captures the need for continuous judicial reform of any nation.
 “….human society is dynamic; the system of administration of justice cannot be static but must be improved to create more effective and efficient mechanisms, procedures and institutions for dealing with the new realities and challenges in the society. This is because it is impossible to have a sound economy without a solid foundation of good laws that can curb anti-social behaviours and other disruptive tendencies. As we develop plans and strategies for the economic and other forms of reforms, we also need to develop plans and programs for creating sound laws and procedural systems consistent with our commitment to our legislative agenda.”