Banjul, 27 June 2019: The “Institute for Human Rights and Development in Africa” (IHRDA) and the African Women Lawyers Association, Nigeria Branch (AWLA-Nigeria) on 26 June 2019 filed an action against the Federal Republic of Nigeria before the ECOWAS Court of Justice for the violation of the rights of a young woman who was raped in Lagos in 2011.

The Applicant in the case submits that even though the perpetrator was charged to Court, the Court proceedings are yet to be concluded 8 years after the rape. The Applicant alleges violations of the right to a remedy and right to freedom from gender-based discrimination among others.


10 May 2021: Court notifies parties of postponement of hearing from 12 May 2021 to 23 September 2021.

23 September 2021: Case called for hearing and adjourned to 4 December 2021 for judgment. Both parties were represented.

7 March 2022: Court notifies of hearing scheduled for 24 March 2022

24 March 2022: Court passes judgement declaring Nigeria not in violation of victim’s rights to dignity and to freedom from cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment; dismisses victim’s claims for damages. Court however finds Nigeria in violation of victim’s right to fair trial under Article 7(1)(a) of the African Charter, by virtue of its failure to conduct a speedy and effective trial against the perpetrator of the offence, and orders Nigeria to carry out an effective prosecution.