Judge Justice Hassan B. Jallow yesterday launched the 2010-2012 Supreme Court
law reports, customary law and Sharia law publications, at a ceremony held at
the judiciary complex at Independence Drive in Banjul.
Justice Jallow thanked the European Union for funding the justice and legal education project, adding that the project aims to contribute to better democratic and economic governance in The Gambia.
He expressed the need for sustainability of the project, pointing out that he looks forward to further collaboration with the European Union.
In her opening remarks, Mrs Janet R. Sallah-Njie, a common law expert and the project co-coordinator, said the project took a holistic approach of improving all aspects of the tripartite justice delivery system in The Gambia.
She said the project include, among others, supporting the judiciary through the training of judges, magistrates, and cadis; supporting the traditional and customary adjudicatory system through the training of Alkalolus, community mediators, chiefs and members of the district tribunals, and supporting legal education in collaboration with the Gambia Law School and the University of The Gambia Faculty of Law.
Mrs Sallah-Njie disclosed that in 2016, under the auspices of European Union funded-project, the National Council for Law Reporting successfully published two very important publications relating to jurisprudence under the tripartite legal system.
The publications included the maiden edition of the Supreme Court Law Reports 2014/2015, dedicated specifically to jurisprudence derived from the Supreme Court, as the highest court in The Gambia, and report relating to the jurisprudence of the Sharia Court i.e. the Sharia Law Report 2012/2015.
Mrs Janet Sallah-Njie further said that the project also funded a series of publication on customary law and Sharia law including Superior Court judgments on customary law and procedure; Sharia jurisprudence in The Gambia; land tenure dispute resolution and customary law; and customary law and usages of The Gambia and interview with chiefs.
She revealed that the law reports are the tools of trade of the practicing lawyer and “these tools play a significant role in the development of the rule of law”.
According to her, the rule of law ensures that a country is governed by a definite set of rules and that both the governors and governed and indeed the state are all subject to law.
Justice Awa Bah, chairperson of the National Council for Law Reporting (NCLR), thanked the European Union for sponsoring the 2010-2012 edition of The Gambia Supreme Court Law Reports.
The European Union Access to Justice and Legal Education project in The Gambia sponsored the publication of the maiden volume 2014-2015.
Justice Bah said this second edition was a selected compilation of enriched judicial pronouncements in fourteen judgments and three rulings covering a diverse range of subject matters that would be of captivating interest to all.
She expressed gratitude to Mrs Victoria Andrews, the editor of the 2010-2012 edition for her editorial vigour and meticulousness despite the very short time frame within which to deliver.
She also thanked Mrs Janet Sallah-Njie, the project co-coordinator, for her determination, dedication and steadfastness.
Cherno Marenah, the Solicitor General and Legal Secretary, who represented the Attorney General and Minister of Justice, thanked the European Union for the initiative in sponsoring the project.
He said the launching of the 2010-2012 Suprme Court Law Reports and Customary Laws and Sharia Laws could not have come at a better time and he pledge his ministry’s support for the initiative.
Meanwhile, a cheque of 10,000 euros was presented to Justice Awa Bah, the chairperson of the National Council for Law Reporting, by the EU Ambassador to The Gambia.
The ceremony was attended by the Speaker of the National Assembly, Hon. Mariam Denton, judges, magistrates, cadis, senior officials of the judiciary, members of the Gambia Bar Association, and the Inspector General of Police.