Latest Articles

Namibia’s top court on recognising foreign same-sex marriage: what did it actually say?

In a decision with wide-reaching implications for the country’s gay and lesbian community, Namibia’s apex supreme court has held that same-sex marriages, properly concluded in countries where such unions are permitted, must be regarded as valid in Namibia. The new decision, made despite the fact that same-sex marriage is not allowed in this Southern African nation, brings to an end long-running litigation involving two couples whose relationship had been refused recognition.

Seychelles and human trafficking: sinister new trend emerges from appeal

Seychelles is regarded as a state that is doing relatively well on the question of combatting human trafficking. It’s on the US state department’s global assessment register as at Tier 2: not fully meeting the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking, but making significant efforts to do so. These efforts include establishing the country’s first anti-trafficking hotline and establishing a trafficking-specific shelter. Two recent appeal judgments, however, give a sense of the difficulty of the work that lies ahead. Both involved a worrying new development in human trafficking: the use of local men as ‘drug guarantees’. These are people trafficked to stand as hostages to ensure that money owed to drug suppliers will be paid.

Court orders more learning space for law students

Desperate law students at the University of Zambia have taken the council of the university to court: the students were distressed about the shortage of lecture halls and study space on campus due to an unprecedented number of students signed up after the government changed its policy on admissions. The court heard of students facing ‘near stampede circumstances’ in trying to attend lectures, with jostling for seats and many standing outside the lecture rooms.

Lesotho's CJ bemoans police impunity & its effect on rule of law

The frustration of Lesotho’s Chief Justice Sakoane Sakoane at continuing police brutality against ordinary citizens of that country is plainly evident in a new decision. Just as disturbing for him is the fact that police mostly commit these acts with impunity – seldom are they investigated and prosecuted – and the attorney general often fights against complainants if they ever bring a claim for damages, even in the face of completed medical reports that put the matter beyond doubt. The CJ found the case of Kabelo Khabanyane against the police particularly egregious since Khabanyane is an elderly man who has a visual impairment. Thus, he was highly vulnerable to police assault. In addition, their assaults against him came at dawn, after police found him sleeping.

Unconstitutional for Uganda’s tax authority to demand banks supply sensitive information on every single client

In March 2018, the Commissioner General of the Ugandan Revenue Authority (URA) sent notices to Uganda’s banks requiring them to supply key information about every single client. The banks in turn challenged whether this move was lawful, and the country’s constitutional court has now declared that it was not.