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Adurumokumor Of Bakokodia V. E. E. Sillo Of Omadinor & Anor (1952) LJR-WACA

Adurumokumor Of Bakokodia On Behalf Of Himself And The People Of Bakokodia V. E. E. Sillo Of Omadinor & Anor (1952)

LawGlobal Hub Judgment Report – West Africa Court of Appeal

Practice and Procedure—Suit transferred from Native Court—Plaintiffs suing in representative capacity—Supreme Court (Civil Procedure) Rules, Order 4, rule 3.

Facts

The respondents as plaintiffs sued the appellants as defendants in the Native Court claiming a declaration of title to land and damages for trespass. The suit was transferred to the Supreme Court and pleadings were ordered.

The plaintiffs averred that they were Chiefs and elders of Omadinor suing for themselves and the people of Omadinor, and that the defendant was a Chief and elder of Bakokodai sued for himself and the people of Bakokodia; and these averments were admitted in the defence. The plaintiffs obtained judgment and the defendant appealed.

The defendant complained on appeal (as he had done below) that the plaintiffs, who sued in a representative capacity, had not obtained the approval of the Court, or proved the authority of the persons they represented, so to sue; the
defendant cited Order 4, rule 3, of the Supreme Court (Civil Procedure) Rules
for his argument (text in judgment infra).

The defendant also argued that damages should not have been awarded against him for trespass if he was sued in a representative capacity. The evidence showed that he and his people had trespassed.

See also  T. Thomas & Anor V. F. J. Nabhan Trading As Nabhan Brothers & Ors (1947) LJR-WACA

(There was also a complaint about the plan put in by the plaintiffs, but it had no substance.)

Held

(1) The writ, as originally laid, was in order and required no application for approval to sue in a representative capacity as the Native Court was not subject to the rules of the Supreme Court, and the rights of the parties could not be stultified by the transfer of the suit.

(2) The appellant and his people as a community were responsible for the trespass, and they were all responsible for the damages.

Obiter: The appellant admitted in his defence that the plaintiffs sued for themselves and their people, and that he was sued on behalf of himself and his people.

Appeal dismissed.

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