S. D. Ojo V. Jean Abadie (1955)
LawGlobal Hub Judgment Report – West African Court of Appeal
Res judicata—same issue off acts in former action—parties to put whole case before Court—estoppel despite fresh evidence.
There was a dispute over the sale of a car. The parties agreed for the sale, for a purchase price of £990. The appellant paid the respondent £690 on account. The car got into the hands of a third party who absconded with the car.
There was a dispute between the parties as to whether the car was delivered to the appellant and as to whether it was the appellant or the respondent who handed over the car to the third party. The respondent had brought a previous action against the appellant, claiming the balance of £300. His claim was dismissed and the Court held that the respondent had not proved delivery of the car to the appellant.
The appellant in the present action sought to recover the £690 which he had paid towards the purchase price.
The evidence in this trial in the Court below was preponderantly in favour of the respondent and was supported by a written acknowledgment by the appellant that he had received the car from the respondent. This acknowledgment was not put in evidence in the first action.
The Judge in the Court below did not deal with the appellant’s plea of res judicata and found in favour of the respondent.
That the issue in this case had been decided in the first action and that the respondent could not now impeach a judgment on evidence which was not given in the former trial and that the doctrine of res judicata applied.
Appeal allowed. Judgment entered for plaintiff/appellant.