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Sifax v. Migfo and Limitation Laws in Nigeria: Triumph of Pragmatism over Formalism?

Sifax v. Migfo and Limitation Laws in Nigeria: Triumph of Pragmatism over Formalism? The recent pronouncement of the Supreme Court of Nigeria in Sifax & Ors v. Migfo & Anor reveals the desirability of a pragmatic as against a formalistic approach to Nigerian limitation laws. This article critically examines Sifax and seizes the opportunity to flag up the inadequacies in the extant limitation laws in Nigeria. The article argues that a total overhaul of the limitation laws is long overdue as they are not only old-fashioned and ambiguous but also produce undesirable results. It predicts that it is very unlikely that any legislative intervention may be witnessed in the nearest future. Therefore the article suggests that the courts must continue to fill the gaps by a pragmatic interpretation of the laws within the bounds of the general policy objectives of the limitation laws. It advocates comparative judicialism as a useful methodology to achieve this task. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png African Journal of International and Comparative Law Edinburgh University Press

Sifax v. Migfo and Limitation Laws in Nigeria: Triumph of Pragmatism over Formalism?

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Publisher
Edinburgh University Press
Copyright
Copyright © Edinburgh University Press
ISSN
0954-8890
eISSN
1755-1609
DOI
10.3366/ajicl.2020.0340
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The recent pronouncement of the Supreme Court of Nigeria in Sifax & Ors v. Migfo & Anor reveals the desirability of a pragmatic as against a formalistic approach to Nigerian limitation laws. This article critically examines Sifax and seizes the opportunity to flag up the inadequacies in the extant limitation laws in Nigeria. The article argues that a total overhaul of the limitation laws is long overdue as they are not only old-fashioned and ambiguous but also produce undesirable results. It predicts that it is very unlikely that any legislative intervention may be witnessed in the nearest future. Therefore the article suggests that the courts must continue to fill the gaps by a pragmatic interpretation of the laws within the bounds of the general policy objectives of the limitation laws. It advocates comparative judicialism as a useful methodology to achieve this task.

Journal

African Journal of International and Comparative LawEdinburgh University Press

Published: Nov 1, 2020

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