International Journal of Law
International Journal of Law
International Journal of Law
Vol. 8, Issue 6 (2022)

What is the language of the court in Nigeria? Is it pidgin english or english language? examining the supreme court decision in Okunola Taiwo v Federal Republic of Nigeria (2022) 13 NWLR (Pt. 1846) 61


Ugochukwu Charles Kanu, Nasiru Tijani, Balogun Hammed Funsho

At the base of every criminal trial is the matter of fair hearing guaranteed by section 36 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) hereinafter referred to as the CFRN. It is the constitutional right of a defendant and indeed all the parties to the trial to be given an opportunity to be heard in the course of the determination of his guilt or innocence. This opportunity entails the right to examine in person or through his legal practitioner the witnesses called by the prosecution. By extension the prosecution is also entitled to call his witnesses and examine them. At the other half is the judicial umpire (the Judge) who is saddled with the responsibility of recording the proceedings in writing and making a finding thereafter. Section 36 (6) (e) of the CFRN creates an opportunity for an interpreter to interpret the proceedings to a party who does not understand the language of the court. The inevitable question is what is the official language of the court, that is, the language of which proceedings are to be conducted? Is it Pidgin English or English language? Is Pidgin English, English language? A statement made in Pidgin English is it admissible without translated version? In what language will the statement be recorded? This paper intends to answer these questions in the light of recent decision of the Supreme Court in Okunola Taiwo v Federal Republic of Nigeria (2022) 13 NWLR (Pt. 1846) 61.
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How to cite this article:
Ugochukwu Charles Kanu, Nasiru Tijani, Balogun Hammed Funsho. What is the language of the court in Nigeria? Is it pidgin english or english language? examining the supreme court decision in Okunola Taiwo v Federal Republic of Nigeria (2022) 13 NWLR (Pt. 1846) 61. International Journal of Law, Volume 8, Issue 6, 2022, Pages 120-124
International Journal of Law