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Sub-regional Courts and the Recusal Issue: Emergent Practice of the East African Court of Justice

Sub-regional Courts and the Recusal Issue: Emergent Practice of the East African Court of Justice ABIMBOLA A. OLOWOFOYEKU I. INTRODUCTION The legitimacy of the judicial process is based on the public's respect and on its confidence that the system settles controversies impartially and fairly. Judicial decisions rendered under circumstances that suggest bias, prejudice, or favouritism undermine the integrity of the courts, breed scepticism and mistrust, and thwart the very principles on which the judicial system is based. The judiciary must be extremely diligent in avoiding any appearance of impropriety and must hold itself to exacting standards lest it lose its legitimacy and suffer a loss of public confidence.1 Recent developments across common law jurisdictions have attracted attention to the significance of the principles of fair hearing, judicial bias, impartiality and recusal. One of these developments is the overwhelming impact of human rights discourse everywhere.2 Another is the growth in regional and sub-regional organisations, often with courts mandated inter alia to review decisions involving human rights claims and/or to embrace human rights values and basic norms LLB (Hons) (Lagos), LLM (LSE), PhD (UCL), barrister and solicitor of the Supreme Court of Nigeria, Professor of Law, and Director, Centre for International and Public Law, Brunel University, London. I am grateful to my colleague Professor Ben http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png African Journal of International and Comparative Law Edinburgh University Press

Sub-regional Courts and the Recusal Issue: Emergent Practice of the East African Court of Justice

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Publisher
Edinburgh University Press
Copyright
© Edinburgh University Press 2012
Subject
Articles; African Studies
ISSN
0954-8890
eISSN
1755-1609
DOI
10.3366/ajicl.2012.0041
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

ABIMBOLA A. OLOWOFOYEKU I. INTRODUCTION The legitimacy of the judicial process is based on the public's respect and on its confidence that the system settles controversies impartially and fairly. Judicial decisions rendered under circumstances that suggest bias, prejudice, or favouritism undermine the integrity of the courts, breed scepticism and mistrust, and thwart the very principles on which the judicial system is based. The judiciary must be extremely diligent in avoiding any appearance of impropriety and must hold itself to exacting standards lest it lose its legitimacy and suffer a loss of public confidence.1 Recent developments across common law jurisdictions have attracted attention to the significance of the principles of fair hearing, judicial bias, impartiality and recusal. One of these developments is the overwhelming impact of human rights discourse everywhere.2 Another is the growth in regional and sub-regional organisations, often with courts mandated inter alia to review decisions involving human rights claims and/or to embrace human rights values and basic norms LLB (Hons) (Lagos), LLM (LSE), PhD (UCL), barrister and solicitor of the Supreme Court of Nigeria, Professor of Law, and Director, Centre for International and Public Law, Brunel University, London. I am grateful to my colleague Professor Ben

Journal

African Journal of International and Comparative LawEdinburgh University Press

Published: Oct 1, 2012

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