Nigeria's Sharia Criminal Procedure Codes
August 24, 2009
SHARIA IMPLEMENTATION IN NORTHERN NIGERIA 1996-2006 A SOURCEBOOK, Vol. IV, Chapter 5, pp. 171-203, Philip Ostien, ed., Ibadan: Spectrum Books Ltd., 2007
The essay begins with a brief history of the law of criminal procedure in the northern states of Nigeria, from the colonial period up to 1999/2000. Particular attention is paid to criminal procedure in the Muslim courts in the colonial period, the sources in the fiqh on which it was based, and the problems it raised as Independence approached. Changes made at Independence, including the constitutionalisation of the law of criminal procedure, the introduction of the Criminal Procedure Code of 1960, and the complications attending the application of the latter, are described. The new Sharia Criminal Procedure Codes enacted in 1999/2000 and subsequently, when twelve northern states began their programmes of sharia implementation, are then described and discussed. The interplay of the new codes with uncodified Islamic rules of procedure and evidence, on the one hand, and with other applicable law including the Nigerian constitution, on the other, is analysed. The essay concludes with a discussion of what the Sharia Criminal Procedure Codes say about the imposition and mode of execution of certain types of sentences (caning; retaliation; hudud including amputation and stoning to death) and why, although such sentences are being imposed by the Sharia Courts, they are not being executed.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 33
Keywords: Nigeria, Islamic criminal law, Islamic penal law, sharia, sharia criminal procedure codesAccepted Paper Series
Date posted: August 26, 2009
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