The Right to Bail in Cases Involving Sexual Offences against Children

This post was originally prepared for use in the internal publications of the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission in an effort to strengthen the engagement of the Commission in protecting and promoting the rights of victims of sexual offences while at the same time ensuring the due process rights of the accused. However, it never got to see the light of day for reasons unrelated to its content. Now that we are done with the adoption of a criminal justice administration policy and taking up the revision of the criminal procedure code, it may be time to give it another try.

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What is the 'good' in good governance?

This piece aims to highlight the link between good governance and democracy. Examining the key components of both argues that the two concepts are indeed one and the same: ‘good governance’ is but a sanitized name for ‘democratic governance’. (I have to admit a dislike for the term ‘good governance’, which, for me, suggests that it is an option rather than an obligation tied to a set of fundamental rights.)

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Access to Justice and Legal Aid in Ethiopia

I wrote This brief article for the internal newsletter of the EHRC; it never got published due to delays in the coming out of the newsletter. I have planned to update it with additional information on recent events such as the new mandate of the MoJ to assist ‘women and children’ in civil cases. The intensified criminal legal aid activities of the Public Defenders Office under the Federal Supreme Court should also be mentioned. Finally, one should be wary of the current status of CSO/NGO legal aid programs in light of the post-Charities and Societies Proclamation challenges. As far as I can tell, the only ones that have survived are those supported through the EHRC funding initiative. Anyway, I believe the original version could serve as a starting point until I (or someone else) can develop a revised version. So, here it is.

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Fair Practice under Copyright Law of Ethiopia

The purpose of copyright law is not to ensure the owner of copyright a maximum economic benefit, rather to balance the right of the copyright owner to obtain a fair return and society’s interest in access to and use of information. As a result, the copyright law does not only provide exclusive right to the copyright owner, but also exceptions to the exclusive right and allow the use of copyrighted work by third parties in certain circumstances.

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The Control of constitutionality of laws - a comparative analysis between Ethiopia and Nigeria

This essay examines the normative contemporary constitutional law question ‘how constitutionality of laws is controlled?’ under Ethiopian and Nigerian Federal Systems. In constitutional terms, both this question and federal systems require a written constitution that serve as a fundamental or basic law and placed hierarchically at the highest peak.

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Express repeal of delegated Legislation under Ethiopia

"No law, regulation, directive or practice shall, in so far as it is inconsistent with this Proclamation, have force or effect with respect to matters provided for by this Proclamation”.

  1. Introduction

Paradoxically, in most modern societies, the larger proportion of the law—delegated legislation—is not made by elected lawmakers or the proper legislature. To an increasing extent, law in these countries is made through the Executive branch, not the parliament. The common practice for Acts of Parliament to bestow power (through empowering acts) to make regulations, particularly to government Ministers, is an obvious manifestation of this development.

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Modernizing the Legislative and Regulatory Framework of Ethiopia

Before considering the subject matter of this article, a brief explanation of the history of Ethiopian Codes and constitutional development is helpful because it focuses attention on the key issues that I would like to raise. The Ethiopian legal system constitutes the Constitution, international treaties, codified laws, and statues as a primary source of law. This essay, however, limits itself to codified laws and primary legislation.

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Legal Orientalism

I will try to make this short essay as perceptive as possible and I will try to avoid legal jargon. Legal jargon is thought to make a writer’s essay water-tight, however, I think this is a misperception, and such language should only be used when it is necessary to describe something accurately- with the right context, meaning and empirical reference. I do this because I do not want my reader to feel alienated by merely looking at the title. I think it is better to address the question: why am I tempted to write about ‘Legal Orientalism’?

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Some Reflections on the Classification of Goods under the Ethiopian Civil code

In different legal systems of the world, properties are classified into different categories such as personal and real, private and public, movable and immovable, absolute and qualified, corporeal and incorporeal, etc. The distinction between these types of property is significant for a variety of reasons. Firstly, classification ensures the proper application of the law. This is because the legal regime that governs goods depends on their nature and accordingly their legal treatment substantially varies. For instance, one's rights on movables are more attenuated than one's rights on immovable (or real property). The statutes of limitations or prescriptive periods are usually shorter for movable than immovable property. Besides, real property rights are usually enforceable for a much longer period of time and, in most jurisdictions, real estate and immovable are registered in government-sanctioned land registers. More essentially, the manner for transfer of the possession or ownership of things depends on their nature. For example, the possession of ordinary corporeal chattels (movable things) may be transferred upon delivery. On the contrary, possession of immovable things requires more additional formalities like registration. In short, classification of property has a paramount importance in facilitating legal regulation of property rights and economic transactions.

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If the doctrine of precedent did not exist, it would have to be invented

A law that has been in force since 2005 (Federal Courts Proclamation 454/2005) declares that interpretations of law rendered by the Cassation Division of the Federal Supreme Court (hereinafter referred to as CDFSC), are binding on all federal and state courts. However, according to the same law, this does not prevent the CDFSC from providing a different interpretation in the future.

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