Ecowas court

Good news - and bad - for African judiciary charged with wrong-doing

Justice Joseph Wowo, originally of Nigeria, was jailed on corruption charges in January 2014. His trial was seen by many as involving trumped-up charges and he has now won a kind of vindication via the Community Court of Justice of the Economic Community of West African States (Ecowas).

In a special statement, the Ecowas court has announced that it has ordered Gambia to pay $200 000 in “nominal damages” to Justice Wowo. Unfortunately, however, no judgment has been released that explains the court's decision.

Liberia’s “tardiness” over money laundering investigations “condemned” by West African regional court

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At the heart of the case is Dexter Oil Ltd, based in the Liberian capital of Monrovia, but whose shareholders and directors are Nigerian. Fed up because the Liberian authorities froze $3m that was in Dexter Oil’s account, its directors asked the judges of the regional court – the Community Court of Justice of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) – to find that the company’s right to property was violated.

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