Oil Spillage in Nigeria: Should a Victim’s Claim be Founded on Common Law for Damages or Brought Under the Oil Pipelines Act for Compensation? A Presentation of the Two Arguments

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By Jesse Nwaenyo, Esq.

ABSTRACT

The oil discovered in the Niger Delta region was undoubtedly an important asset to the nation. Geographically, this part of Nigeria was and is for a variety of reasons a difficult area to search for, extract and transport oil. These reasons include the fact that it is partly tidal, low lying and swampy, with large areas of water, in rivers, streams and ponds; the area was of course significantly populated. It was undoubtedly anticipated that there could be real difficulties in transporting any discovered and extracted oil; and the Oil Pipelines Act (hereafter referred to as OPA) was designed to facilitate this.

The OPA was introduced by the legislature to provide an autonomous, comprehensive and federal framework in Nigeria to cover the surveying for, construction, maintenance and operation of oil pipeline network system. With the commencement of operations by the oil companies, there were attendant hazards to lives and properties. Victims of oil pollution were compelled to seek legal remedy at the collapse of settlement proceedings between them and the oil companies granted oil pipeline licences. Prior to the amendment of the Oil Pipelines Act, oil spillage was considered a strict liability offence and damages could be claimed under the rule in Ryland v. Fletcher[1]. However, it has been argued by some school of thoughts that there is a new legal regime of claims for compensation under the OPA and not for damages as founded on common law.

It is therefore pertinent that persons who suffer injury resulting from the breakage of or leakage from the pipeline or an ancillary installation operated by an oil company, understands the nature of his claim and the appropriate route to effectively seek remedy.

This article seeks to examine the arguments whether the Claims of a victim of Oil Spillage can be founded on common law for Damages or should be brought under the Oil Pipeline Act for Compensation; and the Court with the requisite jurisdiction to entertain matters arising from oil spillage under the Oil Pipelines Act. 

THE COURT WITH THE REQUISITE JURISDICTION IN OIL SPILLAGE MATTERS.

The salutary case of Madukolu v. Nkemdilim[2] is explicit on the factors that must be present to necessitate the existence of a Court’s jurisdiction. One of those factors, inter alia, is that the subject matter of the case is within the Court’s jurisdiction and there is no feature in the case which prevents the Court from exercising its jurisdiction. 

The pertinent query in the above condition, and as it relates to every suit, is whether the subject matter of a Plaintiff’s case is within the circumference of the jurisdiction of the Court. This question is usually answered within the parameters of judicial and statutory provisions. 

The question of which court has the jurisdiction to grant compensation under the OPA has been a topical issue in several cases as the Oil Pipelines Act under section 19 appropriated to the Magistrate Court the powers to determine any dispute as to the payment of compensation and in the absence of a Magistrate Court, the High Court exercising jurisdiction in the concerned area will assume jurisdiction. 

The primary jurisdiction of the Court is a derivative of Constitutional and statutory provisions. It is beyond dispute that the Constitution is regarded as the paramount source of law, and all other laws derive their legality and applicability from it. In consulting the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (1999) (As Amended), we find under Section 251(1)(n) thereof  that: 

1) Notwithstanding anything to the contrary contained in this constitution and in addition to such other jurisdiction as may be conferred upon it by an Act of the National Assembly, the Federal High Court shall have and excise jurisdiction to the exclusion of any other Court in civil causes and matters.

(n) mines and minerals (including Oil fields, Oil mining, geological surveys and natural gas)   (Emphasis supplied)

It is submitted that where the subject matter of a suit is premised on oil spillage, it, ipso facto, comes under the provisions of Section 251(1)(n) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (1999) (As Amended) as reflected above. There is no other Court granted the vires to adjudicate on matters relating to oil spillage except the Federal High Court. This satisfies the first limb of the condition stated in the Madukolu v. Nkemdili case (supra).

In analyzing the Oil Pipelines Act, the Appellate Courts have held in an almanac of cases that it is the Federal High Court that is imbued with jurisdiction on matters relating to oil spillage. In SHELL PET. DEV. CO.(NIG) LTD V ISAIAH[3] where it was categorically stated that:

Installation of pipelines, producing, treating and transmitting of crude oil to the storage tanks is part of Petroleum Mining Operations. Therefore, if an incident happens during the transmission of petroleum to the storage tanks it can be explained as having arisen from or connected with or pertaining to mines, minerals, including oil fields, and oil mining. In this case, the subject-matter of the claim, which is oil spillage, falls within the exclusive Jurisdiction of the Federal High Court as provided under section 230(l)(a) of the Constitution (Suspension and Modification) Decree No. 107 of 1993.”

Also, in the brilliant case of the High Court of Justice Queen’s Bench Division between THE BODO COMMUNITY &ORS AND THE SHELL PETROLEUM DEVELOPMENT COMPANY OF NIGERIA LIMITED[4], PER JUSTICE Peter Coulson stated thus:

“Based on this, and I find based on my understanding of the evidence of both Justices Oguntade and Ayoola, the Federal High Court has exclusive jurisdiction to deal not only with any cases at common law but also any claim for statutory compensation under the OPA insofar as there are separable remedies.”

Similarly, in OKONI V. NIGERIAN AGIP OIL CO. (NIG) LTD[5], it was accentuated thus:

“.…For the Federal High Court to have exclusive jurisdiction under Section 7 (1) (p) of the Federal High Court (Amendment) Decree, 1991, the cause or matter should be connected with or pertain to mines and minerals, including oil field, oil mining, geological surveys and natural gas and the jurisdiction shall be construed to include jurisdiction to hear and determine all issues relating to, arising from or ancillary to mines and minerals, oil field, oil mining et cetera. The verb “connected” is defined in Black’s Law Dictionary, 6th Ed. as ‘joined; united by junction, by an intervening substance or medium, by dependence or relation, or by order in a series.’ Whereas the verb “pertain” is defined in Longman’s Dictionary of Contemporary English to mean “to belong or have connection with (something)… From the facts established, there is close affinity between oil spillage which is the cause of action and Section 7 (1) (p) of the 1991 Decree. The words of Section 7(1) of the aforesaid Decree are plain and unambiguous and I have no hesitation in giving them their natural and ordinary meaning in Industries Ltd. (1967) 2 All E.R. 1137 at 1141.” In C.G.G (Nig) Ltd v. Asaagbara (2001) 1 NWLR (pt 693) 155”.

Basically, the Court will be invited to peruse the Claims of a Plaintiff to determine whether or not the cause of action centers on or is related to oil mining.

The Court of Appeal PER Garba, JCA., held in Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas Ltd. v. Green[6]:

“….The claim of the respondents therefore pertains to, arose from and are connected with the offensive discharge occasioned by and in the course of the production and exportation of liquefied natural gas by the appellant, which they asserted had caused them losses for which they claim damages in the statement of claim. It is consequently beyond viable argument that the claims by the respondents in the statement of claim are causes or matters that relate to, arising from and connected with the production of natural gas, which by virtue of Section 251(1)(n) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 …., are within the exclusive jurisdiction of the Federal High Court. The Rivers State High Court, in the circumstances, lacks the jurisdiction to entertain and adjudicated over such causes or matters as disclosed in the respondents’ statement of claim.” [Emphasis mine].  

It is now settled beyond peradventure that it is the Federal High Court and not the Magistrate Court that has the requisite jurisdiction to entertain matters arising from or related to oil mining. Consequently, where a person suffers injury as a result of any breakage of or leakage from a pipeline or an ancillary installation, it is the Federal High Court that has the jurisdiction to entertain any matter arising therefrom.

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ARGUMENT ON WHETHER A PLAINTIFF CAN CLAIM DAMAGES IN AN ACTION FOR OIL SPILLAGE.

The second limb of the condition to satisfy in the Nkemdilim v. Madukolu case (Supra) is that there must not be a feature in a Plaintiff’s case ‘which prevents the court from the exercise of jurisdiction.’

Some proponents have argued that it is cardinal to observe that the objective of the Oil Pipelines Act is to make provision for licence to be granted for the establishment and maintenance of pipelines incidental and supplementary to oil fields and oil mining and for purposes ancillary to such pipelines. They stressed that the provisions of the OPA are not exclusive, that claims on the ground of oil spillage are not limited to the strict provisions of the OPA and submitted that Section 11(5) of the OPA is not an impenetrable vest made of enhanced titanium.

They have hinted that the questions that needs to be addressed is whether the compensatory provisions of the Oil Pipelines Act are so conclusive as to completely oust the application of common law principles. It is pertinent to note the provisions of section 11 (6) of the Oil Pipelines Act which incorporates the provisions of other laws, enactments or rules of like effect, as part of laws that regulate all matters incidental to claims for compensation or damages arising from oil spillage. A systematic review of the body of oil and gas legislations in Nigeria reveals that there are a number of other statutes, apart from the Oil Pipeline Act, that regulates matters in respect of injuries sustained from oil spill.

There is no express wording in the OPA which actually excludes the common law.  For instance, the wording of the Act does not say that for oil spillage from pipelines the common law is excluded or that it is only compensation that is payable. Professor A.E.W. Park albeit in 1968 wrote at page 50 in The Sources of Nigeria Law (Sweet & Maxwell):

“…while it is beyond dispute that Nigerian legislation can override English common law, equity and statutes, it does not automatically follow that such an enactment removes from the law any English rules on the same or a related subject. In each case it is necessary to examine the enactment and decide from its contents and the surroundings circumstances whether it was intended to supplant or merely to supplement the comparable portion of the received English law.”

It was pointed out in Awolowo v. Shagari[7]  that:

“A statute should always be looked at as a whole; words used in a statute are to be read according to their meaning as popularly understood at the time the statute became law; a statute is presumed not to alter existing law beyond that necessarily required by the statute.”

In Craies on Legislation[8], the author scripted that:

“14.1.2 The creation of a statutory duty to do something does not of itself abrogate a common law duty to do that thing unless there is something about the form or content of the statutory duty which is repugnant to the continuation of the common law duty…”

There is a presumption against legislative interference with common law. So, in many cases the Court have rejected a possible interpretation of legislation on the grounds that it would involve significant departure from pre-existing common law, without the departure being expressly provided for or a necessary implication from the context of the provision. In fact, it is submitted that the OPA could co-exist side by side with common law remedies without any difficulty.

It is submitted that a Plaintiff can base his claims on the grundnorm which is the Constitution to seek redress against an oil company that causes damage to its property due to an oil spill. In MARWA & ORS V. NYAKO & ORS[9]  it was held that:

“The supremacy of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 is captioned by Sections one and three, part 1 of Chapter 1 under general provisions which state that – Section One This constitution is supreme and its provisions shall have binding force on all authorities and persons throughout the Federal Republic of Nigeria.” Section 3 “If any other law is inconsistent with the provisions of this constitution this constitution shall prevail and that other law shall to that extent of the inconsistency be void.” This Court had given recognition to this supremacy and had expatiated on the Constitution through various judgments in its interpretative jurisdiction. The Constitution is described as the grundnorm and the fundamental law of the land. All other legislations in this country take their hierarchy from the provisions of the Constitution. It is not a mere common legal document. It is an organic instrument which confers powers and also creates rights and limitations. It regulates the affairs of the nation state and defines the powers of the different components of government as well as regulating the relationship between the citizens and the state. Once the powers, rights and limitations under the constitution are identified as having been created, their existence cannot be disputed in a court of law.”

Under the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (1999) (As Amended) and the Federal High Court Act, the Federal High Court is imbued with the jurisdiction to grant the reliefs claimed by a Plaintiff and in fact any other ancillary relief which meets the justice of the case.

A Defendant could contend that the Plaintiff ought to have claimed compensations rather than damages. It is submitted that in the context of the Oil Pipeline Act, damages and compensation is a distinction without a difference. Damages connotes and denotes compensation.

For instance, the Law Dictionary[10] has defined damages as “A pecuniary compensation or indemnity, which may be recovered in the courts by any person who as suffered loss, detriment or injury, whether to his person, property, or rights, through the unlawful act or omission or negligence of another.”

In Union Bank of Nigeria Plc v.  Mr. N.M. Okpara Chimaeze[11] the Supreme Court finely noted that:

“Damages are money claimed by or ordered to be paid to a person as compensation for loss or injury. Put differently, damages are the sum of money which a person wronged is entitled to receive from the wrongdoer as compensation for the wrong.” (P.191, para. B)

It is not the attitude of our Court to abandon a Plaintiff without remedy when a wrong has been done to him. The latin maxim ubi jus ibi remedium means that where there is a wrong, there is a remedy.[12]

It needs to be stressed that each case must be determined upon its own peculiar circumstances as no two cases can be identical[13].

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ARGUMENT ON WHETHER CLAIMS RELATING TO OIL SPILLAGE SHOULD BE BROUGHT UNDER THE OIL PIPELINES ACT FOR COMPENSATION.

Section 44(3) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (1999) (As Amended) provides that:

“…the entire property in and control of all minerals, mineral oils and natural gas, in under or upon any land in Nigeria or in, under or upon the territorial waters and the Exclusive Economic Zone of Nigeria shall vest in the Government of the Federation and shall be managed in such manner as may be prescribed by the National Assembly.”

This undoubtedly reflects the importance of oil, in particular, to the economy of Nigeria. This is also reflected in the exclusive jurisdiction granted (by Section 251(1)(n) of the Constitution) to the Federal High Court in civil causes and matters relating mines and minerals.

The issue is whether the OPA, enacted pursuant to the Constitution, provides an exclusive code for compensation for people affected by oil spillage, exclusive in the sense that the common law is excluded.

In Regina (Child Property Action Group) v. Secretary of State for Work and Pensions[14], the Supreme Court addressed an issue whether the Secretary of State could sue for recovery of overpaid social security benefits by way of the common law other than via the statutory basis therefor. Lord Walker, at para. 135, said:

“When Parliament enacts a special regime providing special rights and remedies, that regime may (but does not always) supersede and displace common law rights and remedies (or more general statutory rights and remedies). Whether it has that effect is a question of statutory construction.”

Again, in Total Network SL v. Revenue and Customs Commissioners[15], Lord Mance at Paragraph 130 stated that:

“…it seems to me that the statute must positively be shown to be inconsistent with the continuation of the ordinary common law remedy otherwise available…”

The Nigerian cases broadly reflect the thinking applied in the above English cases. In Universal Trust Bank & 2Ors. v. Chief Oludotun Olajide Koleoso[16]  it was held that:

“It has become trite law that statutory provisions supersede common law or customary law. Where therefore a statute has provided for certain actions, commom law provisions relating to such actions cease to apply.”

In Harka Air Services (Nig.) Ltd v. Keazor[17], the Supreme Court had to consider the impact of the Warsaw Convention (Air Carriers’ Liability) on the common law personal injury claims of a claimant for the negligence of an air carrier. Adekeye JSC held that:

“The law is that where domestic/common law rights have been enacted into a statutory provision, it is to the statutory that resort must be had for such right and not the domestic/common law.”

In the same vein, in the case of Patkun Industries Ltd v. Niger shoes manufacturing Co. Ltd[18]  Karibi-Whyte JSC stated that:

“Where a common law right has been enacted into statutory provision, it is to the statutory provision so made that resort must be had for such rights and not to the common law.”

Section 11(5) of the OPA, with which this issue is most concerned, provides for compensation:

“The holder of a licence shall pay compensation –

(a) to any person whose land or interest in land (whether or not it is land in respect of which the licence has been granted) is injuriously affected by the exercise of the rights conferred by the licence, for any such injurious affection not otherwise made good; and

(b) to any person suffering damage by reason of any neglect on the part of the holder or his agents, servants or workmen to protect, maintain or repair any work, structure or thing executed under the licence, for any such damage not otherwise made good; and

(c) to any person suffering damage (other than on account of his own default or on account of the malicious act of a third person) as a consequence of any breakage of or leakage from the pipeline or an ancillary installation, for any such damage not otherwise made good.

If the amount of such compensation is not agreed between any such person and the holder, it shall be fixed by a court in accordance with Part IV of this Act.”

Section 11 (6) of the OPA, added by amendment to the Oil Pipelines Act 1965, provides that:

“For the removal of doubt it is hereby declared that the powers granted to the holder of a licence under this Act shall be exercisable only subject to the provisions of this Act and of any other enactment or rule of law.”

Part IV contains provisions which deal with compensation. Section 20 provides as follows:

  1. If a claim is made under subsection (3) of section 6 of this Act, the court shall award such compensation as it considers just in respect for any damage done to any buildings, crops or profitable trees by the holder of the permit in the exercise of his rights thereunder and in addition may award such sum in respect of disturbance (if any) as it may consider just.
  1. if a claim is made under subsection (5) of section 11 of this Act, the court shall award such compensation as it considers just, having regard to –

a)  any damage done to any buildings, crops or profitable trees by the holder of the licence in the exercise of the rights conferred by the licence; and

b) any disturbance caused by the holder in the exercise of such rights; and

c) any damage suffered by any person by reason of any neglect on the part of the holder or his agents, servants or workmen to protect, maintain or repair any work, structure or thing executed under the licence; and

d) any damage suffered by any person (other than as stated in sub section (5) of this section) as a consequence of any breakage of or leakage from the pipeline or an ancillary installation; and

e) loss (if any) in value of the land or interests in land by reason of the exercise of the rights as aforesaid, and also having regard to any compensation already awarded in accordance with subsection (1) of this section.

The succeeding subsections are allied with the earlier provisions relating to compensation and ended by providing that “Provided that nothing in this subsection shall preclude the court awarding additional compensation upon subsequent application if loss or damage from the operation of the oil pipeline be proved and the court is of opinion that such loss or damage is loss or damage not contemplated at the date of the original award.”

The compensation scheme provided by the OPA is very broadly drawn. When one examines the sub-heads of compensation within the sub-sections of Section 11(5), there are some parallels and some differences between it and the common law.

The common law has been superseded by the OPA in respect of the financial remedies available for land injuriously affected and for damage caused by neglect in the protection, maintenance and operation of the licensed pipelines or caused by a leakage of such pipelines.

In the case of THE BODO COMMUNITY &ORS AND THE SHELL PETROLEUM DEVELOPMENT COMPANY OF NIGERIA LIMITED[19], PER JUSTICE Peter Coulson, some reasons were proffered to substantiate the point that the OPA is an exclusive code:

  1. There is a sufficiently comprehensive code within the OPA to cover the key aspects of the whole process involved in the pipelines.
  1. There is a wide and comprehensive provision for compensation.
  1. There are substantial differences between the statutory scheme and the common law both in terms of substance and in terms of procedures. The statutory scheme goes much wider in terms of liability (both as to scope and to what has to be established) than the common law. The statutory regime is compensatory in nature and therefore excludes any entitlement to aggravated, exemplary or punitive damages otherwise available under some of the common law remedies.
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On the need to resort to statutory provision and not common law where such common law rights have been enacted into a statute, the Court of Appeal in the case of Nigerian Agip Oil Company Ltd v. Mr. Onyemachi Ogbu[20] held that:

“Where a statute has provided for certain actions, resort must be had to the statute and not to common law remedies. Action for damage suffered by fact of the exercise of the powers under the Oil Pipelines Act is not exercisable at will and as under the common law, at the election of an aggrieved person.” Per Danjuma, JCA (Pp. 166-168) lines 45-45.

Similarly, in Patkun Ltd. v. Niger shoes[21], the Supreme Court held that:

“It is well settled law that where a common law right has been enacted into statutory provision so made that resort must be had for such rights and not in the common law.”

The new legal regime is that Claims for oil spillage will be for compensation and not for damages; and must be instituted in strict compliance with the provisions of the Oil Pipelines Act. In the case of Nigerian Agip Oil Company Ltd v. Mr. Onyemachi Ogbu[22], it was held that:

“The Oil Pipelines Act, having been delimited as the law under which the appellants shall exercise his powers under the licence granted and under which the right of compensation and the circumstance and permissible stage of ventilating the right of action in court is provided, clearly means that any action instituted otherwise than in strict accordance with the provision of the Act is incompetent and the court thereat would have no jurisdiction to entertain the matter. See Labour Party v. Bello (2017) 5 WRN 1; (2017) 2 NWLR (Pt. 1548) 15”

On the effect of a claim for compensation not founded on or pursued under the exclusive compensation regime provided by the Oil Pipelines Act, the Court of Appeal in Nigerian Agip Oil Company Ltd v. Mr. Onyemachi Ogbu[23] stated that:

The appellant’s learned counsel was therefore right when he contended at page 5 of the appellant’s brief of argument that “the respondent’s claim for compensation having not been founded or pursued under the exclusive compensation regime provided by the Oil Pipelines Act is incompetent and ought to be struck out.” It should be clear that the reason for the incompetence of the suit is not because it alludes to the common law rule in Rylands v. Fletcher as did the trial judge or as admitted to be so and yet denying by the respondents’ counsel; No! it is incompetent because the strict provisions of the Oil Pipelines Act analyses the right of action by stipulating the prior presentation of a complaint or damage and where not agreeable or quantum then a suit may ensure, in respect of compensation.” Per Danjuma, JCA [P.166] lines. 20-30.

His Lordship Danjuma, JCA further proceeded to conclude that:

“The Oil Pipelines Act, in the plenitude of its preamble and section II thereof has clearly shown that every claim appertaining damage from oil installation or ancillary installation, injurious affectation, on/and or interest in land as in the appellant’s Ebocha Oil well location, may only be made under the Act. It is for compensation. It shall not be for damages as claimed. A damage and compensation claim form is filled and submitted.” [P.166] lines. 40-45. Nigerian Agip Oil Company Ltd v. Mr. Onyemachi Ogbu (Supra)

What then is the duty of an aggrieved person under the Oil Pipelines Act who has a complaint on damages caused? This question was answered in Nigerian Agip Oil Company Ltd v. Mr. Onyemachi Ogbu thus:

“…it is my view that an aggrieved person (party) under the Oil Pipelines Act who has a complaint on damages caused must comply strictly with the provisions of the said Act and exhaust the procedure therein before approaching a court for any relief. By section 11(5), it is clear that it is only when the damages caused or complained of remains unredressed, in the event of dispute as to quantum or amount of damages that a court may be approached. Even then, it shall be a claim for compensation and not damages. That being the case, a court will not have jurisdiction to entertain a suit lodged in respect of damages caused when the condition precedent for the assumption of jurisdiction had not been satisfied and when the appropriate relief was not sought.” Per Danjuma, JCA [P.165] lines. 20-30.

From the afore-quoted provisions, it is patently clear that the Oil Pipelines Act has provided for redress in favour of any person injured in the event of any damage caused by the operation of a holder of an Oil Pipeline licence or its agent and under the circumstances as stipulated in the Act.

In the final analysis, this author is of the view that the Oil Pipelines Act, Cap. 07, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria is an exclusive code in matters relating to claims for compensation arising from oil spillage. 

CONCLUSION 

It is now settled beyond peradventure that it is the Federal High Court and not the Magistrate Court that has the requisite jurisdiction to entertains matters arising from or related to oil mining. Consequently, where a person suffers injury as a result of any breakage of or leakage from a pipeline or an ancillary installation, it is the Federal High Court that has the jurisdiction to entertain any matter arising therefrom.

The compensation scheme provided by the OPA is very broadly drawn. When one examines the sub-heads of compensation within the sub-sections of Section 11(5), there are some parallels and some differences between it and the common law.

The common law has been superseded by the OPA in respect of the financial remedies available for land injuriously affected and for damage caused by neglect in the protection, maintenance and operation of the licensed pipelines or caused by a leakage of such pipelines.

An aggrieved person who has a complaint on damages caused must comply strictly with the provisions of the said Act and exhaust the procedure therein before approaching a court for any relief.

Jesse Nwaenyo is a legal practitioner. He was a former Head of Chambers, Prof. Paul C. Ananaba, SAN & Co. He’s a leadership expert and nation builder. Jurisource@gmail.com


Footnotes

[1] (1868) LR 3 HL 330

[2] (1962) 2 SCNLR 341

[3] (2001) 11 NWLR (PT.723) 168 SC

[4] (2014) EWHC TCC

[5] (2012) LPELR-14257 (CA)

[6] (2010) All FWLR (Pt. 530) 1300 Per CORDELIA IFEOMA JOMBO-OFO, JCA (Pp 9 – 17 Paras B – B).

[7] (1979) 6-9 SC 51

[8] (10th ed., 2012)

[9] (2012) LPELR- 7837 (SC)

[10] https://www.thelawdictionary.com Vide Scott v. Donald, 105 U.S. 58, 17 Sup. Ct. 205, 41 L.Ed.032

[11] (2014) 9 NWLR (Part 1411) 166

[12] Harka Air Service Nig. Ltd v. Keazor (2011) 13 NWLR (Pt. 1264) 320.

[13] THE ADMINISTRATORS/EXECUTORS OF THE ESTATE OF GEN. SANI ABACHA (DECEASED) v. SAMUEL DAVID EKE-SPIFF & ORS. (2009) LPELR-3152 (SC) P.64, Paras EG.

[14] (2010) UKSC 54

[15] (2008) UKHL 19

[16] (2006) 9 CLRN 107

[17] (2011) LPELR 1353 (SC)

[18] (1988) 5 NWLR (Pt. 93) 138

[19] (2014) EWHC TCC

[20] (2019) 35 WRN 133

[21] [21]  (1988) NWLR (Pt. 93) 138 at 152-153

[22] (Supra)

[23] (Supra)

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