Nii Ahele Nanshiedu II & Anor V. Henry Nuno Of Accra (1944)
LawGlobal Hub Judgment Report – West African Court of Appeal
Jurisdiction of the Supreme Court—Libel disclosing offences against Chief’s position—Courts Ordinance, s. 75 (1).
Plaintiff sued for libel in the Divisional Court, Accra, but the Court referred the parties to the Native Tribunal or State Council on the ground that the writ disclosed offences of attempting to undermine or usurp a Chief’s position, punishable under s. 27 (1) and sv 31 of the Native Administration Ordinance ; so Plaintiff appealed on the ground that a Native Tribunal had no jurisdiction in libel and the damages of £200 claimed were beyond it. The ground of the Judge’s filing was not clear. On appeal Counsel for Defendant-Respondent argued that the action related to the election, installation, or deposition of a Chief and as such could not be tried by the Supreme Court, in view of the innuendo averred in the writ ; though the only defence made in the action was that that innuendo was far fetched.
that the rule that civil proceedings should wait upon a criminal trial where an offence is alleged applied to felonies only and not to m isdemeanours.Held also, that so far there was no issue raised relating to the election, installation, deposition or abdication of a Chief, the case was not removed from the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court.
The Appellant is awarded costs in this Court assessed at £28 15s. and of the one day’s argument in the Court below assessed at £5 5s. the other costs in the Court below, both those already incurred and those to be incurred at the further hearing are to abide the ultimate issue.