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LAW AND THE POLITICAL STRUCTURE IN NIGERIA

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Introduction

The Nigerian Law comprises of courts, offences, and various types of laws. Nigeria has its own constitution which was established on 29 May 1999. The Constitution of Nigeria is the supreme law of the country. There are four distinct legal systems in Nigeria, which include English law, common law, customary law, and sharia Law. English law in Nigeria is derived from the colonial Nigeria, while common law is a development from its post-colonial independence (Agude, 2000). Customary Law is derived from indigenous traditional norms and practices, including the dispute resolution meetings of pre-colonial Yoruba land secret societies and the Èkpè and Okónkò of Igboland and Ibibio land.[citation needed] Sharia Law (also known as Islamic Law) used to be used only in Northern Nigeria, where Islam is the predominant religion. It is also being used in Lagos state by Muslims. The rule of law implies that government authority may only be exercised in accordance with written laws, which were adopted through an established procedure. The law is intended to safeguard against arbitrary rulings in individual cases and the political system. In a political system which adheres to the paramount principles of the rule of law, the law is supreme over the acts of the government and the people.

The Law and Political Structure in Nigeria The relationship between law and politics are sometimes taken for granted. Yet, their relationship is so intricately linked that, sometimes, one wonders where one stops and the other begins. These two concepts, namely, the law and political structure are so interrelated that one is tempted to liken their relationship with each other.

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