n African Human Rights Law Journal - Enforcement of fundamental rights and the standing rules under the Nigerian Constitution : a need for a more liberal provision

Volume 9, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1609-073X
  • E-ISSN: 1996-2096



This article explores the scope of standing rules in section 46 of the 1999 Nigerian Constitution. It is observed that the section contains a restrictive and narrow provision on . The article finds that this narrow provision has the regressive effect of limiting access to court and it invariably constitutes an impediment or constraint on the enforcement of fundamental human rights in the country. Many common law countries, such as England, Australia, Canada, India and South Africa, have jettisoned this anachronistic position on standing for a more liberal and expansive interpretation. In contrast, the Nigerian Constitution still maintains restrictive and outdated rules of standing. This is inconceivable at a time like this when other common law jurisdictions are enthusiastically adopting a liberal approach to the concept.

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