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Don’t like a court judgment? Just change the law, why don’t you?

 

Though Judge Brian Preston is the author of many other judgments, the best known is a decision he gave in February 2019. It involved a mining company that wanted to extract 21m tons of coal over 16 years in a picturesque country valley. But the minister for planning refused development consent. And that is how the case found itself before Judge Preston, via an appeal by the mining company

No more child brides says Tanzania's highest court

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When the high court delivered its 2016 judgment finding that children could not marry before the age of 18, child and women’s rights’ activists rejoiced. Sections of Tanzania’s Law of Marriage Act that allowed girls to be married while still under age were declared unconstitutional, and the legislature was put on terms to change the law so that it conformed with the constitution.

Cabinet Minister ignored 'God-given blessing' - Lesotho court

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Like virtually every other institution in Lesotho, the Maseru City Council – or at least certain of its tenders and some of its members – have been accused of corruption. In response, and citing certain ‘irregularities’, the Minister of Local Government and Chieftainship, Litsoane Litsoane, dissolved the city’s tender board at the end of July 2019.

Champion of Ugandan judicial independence dies

 

Justice Tsekooko died this week six years after retiring from Uganda's highest court where he had worked as a Supreme Court justice for some 21 years. He had been suffering from prostate cancer. Justice Tsekooko began his life in the law as a state attorney but after a few years he started work as a lawyer in the private sector. During the failing years of the Idi Amin regime, he left the country and lived in exile until that government fell.

15 y.o. jailed for life. Now African Court orders reparations for 'lost youth'

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Read the Goa judgment

 

The case of Benedicto Mallya tells a story that will distress anyone with a human rights conscience.

Even if Mallya had not ultimately been exonerated, his case would still be a poor reflection on the legal system of his home country, Tanzania.

At the time of sentence he was just 15. Nothing in the judgment of the African Court indicates that he was treated any differently from an adult accused by the Tanzanian justice system.

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