STREAM: Constitutions, Law and Justice

STREAM: Constitutions, Law and Justice




Cardiff Law and Global Justice is research centre of Cardiff University which promotes research, teaching and policy engagement on law in the global south. It aims to strengthen appreciation of traditions of critical legal scholarship and the networks of influence between academics working outside Europe and North America. It hosts a transnational student law clinic working on accountability for human rights violations.

For more information see


1.The African Feminist Judgments Project (Ambreena Manji)


The African Feminist Judgment Project is coordinated by Sibongile Ndashe (Initiative for Strategic Litigation in Africa), Johannesburg), Dr Sharifah Sekalala (Warwick Law School) and Professor Ambreena Manji (Cardiff Law School). It builds on similar projects (Canada, UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand and USA) to draft and disseminate alternative judgments for important African landmark cases on a range of legal issues.


At the heart of the project are the following questions — what might we mean by a landmark case in the African context? What is feminist judicial practice in Africa and what might we want it to be? How might alternative feminist judgments contribute to African jurisprudence, legal practice and judicial decision-making? What are the specific Constitutional and historical contexts within which the project must be understood? The practice of academic rewriting of judgment is not new, nor is the practice of feminist rewriting of judgments. The African Feminist Judgment Project draws from sister projects around the world in which feminist academics, lawyers and activists have written alternative feminist judgments in leading cases.


Can we provide better judgments or write them differently if we do so from an explicitly feminist standpoint? Our project explores the potential of the device of the ‘shadow feminist judgment’.


We invite contributions from interested collaborators in two categories:


  • Judgments: If you would like to propose to write a judgment (6000-8000 words), please submit a proposal of 300-500 words. Please indicate the name of the case you wish to write on, and briefly explaining how the case would benefit from a feminist analysis.

  • Commentaries: If you would like to propose to write a commentary (3000-4000 words), please indicate in a 200-300 word proposal the case selected and explain why you think it merits a feminist analysis.

The judgments may be written by a single individual or jointly by two or more authors.


Two workshops will be held to present and discuss our drafts:


  1. African Studies Association UK biennial conference, University of Birmingham, September 2018.
  1. Institute for Strategic Litigation in Africa, Johannesburg, 2019 (date tbc).


We are discussing our proposal with publishers interested in this collection of judgments.

The following is an indicative list of judgments for feminist rewriting:


  1. Magaya v Magaya (Zimbabwe)
  2. Sv Jordan and others (South Africa)
  3. Equality Now and EWLA v Ethiopia (African Commission on Human and Peoples Rights)
  4. DR Congo v Burundi, Congo and Rwanda (African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights)
  5. Doebler v Sudan (African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights)
  6. Hadijahtou Mani Koraou v The Republic of Niger (ECOWAS)
  7. Volks NO v Robinson and Another (South Africa)
  8. Centre for Health, Human Rights and Development & 3 Others v. Attorney General (2015), Constitutional Appeal No. 1 of 2013 (right to health and the role of governments in access to healthcare)
  9. Osoctraco v AG Attorney General vs. Osotraco Ltd – Court of Appeal Civil Appeal No. 32 of 2002 – 6/30/2005 (decision by Egonda Ntende) – on the nature of judicial power under the 1995 Constitution
  10. Susan Kigula v AG, Supreme Court decision Constitutional Court, 10 June 2005, constitutional petition 6 of 2003 (death penalty case)The Environmental Action Network LTD. (TEAN) vs. The Attorney General & National Environment Management Authority (NEMA), Misc. Applic. No. 39, High court of Uganda at Kampala (2001).
  11. The Environmental Action Network Ltd -vs- The AG [2001] LLR 2 on the right to clean and healthy environment The Environmental Action Network LTD. (TEAN) vs. The Attorney General & National Environment Management Authority (NEMA), Misc. Applic. No. 39, High court of Uganda at Kampala (2001).The Environmental Action Network LTD. (TEAN) vs. The Attorney General & National Environment Management Authority (NEMA), Misc. Applic. No. 39, High court of Uganda at Kampala (2001).
  12. Julius Rwabinumi V Hope Banhimbisomwe Civil Appeal No 10 of 2009 on rights of women during divorce.


If you have any queries or suggestions please contact Ambreena Manji  ( 


For submissions please follow the instructions on the website 


  1. Customary Law and Legal Pluralism in Africa. Panel in Honour of the late Professor Gordon Woodman (John Harrington).


This panel honours and reflects on the work of Gordon Woodman, a pioneering and world-renowned scholar of law in Africa and legal theory. Sadly, Professor Woodman passed away on 24th October 2017. His intellectual achievements, his engagement as a teacher and mentor, and his contribution to academic life at the University of Birmingham and elsewhere have been widely praised.

Having started his career at the University of Ghana in 1961, Gordon Woodman’s work on customary land law in that country has been extremely influential. His book Customary Land Law in the Ghanaian Courts as well as his 2nd edition of Ollennu’s Principles of Customary Land Law in Ghana remain authoritative texts. This contribution was honoured in 2016 when he was made a Member of the Order of the Volta.

More widely Gordon Woodman was one of the world’s most important authors on customary law and a pioneering scholar of legal pluralism.  His standing in the academic legal community was reflected in the conferral of honorary doctorates by the University of Bayreuth (Germany) and the University of Ghana.

We invite proposals for papers addressing all areas of Gordon Woodman’s work and the general themes which he engaged with over his distinguished career: Ghanaian Law, Land Law, Customary Law, Legal Pluralism, Law and Social Change, and Legal Philosophy.

We particularly welcome proposals from scholars working on or based in West Africa, including early career scholars.
This panel is co-sponsored by the University of Birmingham Law School

Confirmed Panels:

Panel 1: Contemporary and Historical Studies of Law in Ghana

  • Law as a Tool of Social Change, Chimbwanda, Victor (The Ghana Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, Accra, Ghana)
  • Social Rejection and Cultural Destruction of Ex-prisoners in Ghana, Antwi, Alex (Mountcrest University College, Kanda, Ghana)
  • Gendering Justice in Post-Colonial Ghana: How Women Parliamentarians Secured a Maintenance of Children Act in 1965, Skinner, Kate (University of Birmingham, Birmingham, United Kingdom)

Panel 2: Legal Pluralism and African Customary Law

  • Legal Pluralism and Social Change: Insights from Matrimonial Property Rights in Nigeria, Diala, Anthony (University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South Africa)
  • (Re-)Defining Customary Law in Contemporary University Legal Education, Chimbwanda, Victor (The Ghana Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, Accra, Ghana)
  • The Elephant in the Room: Patriarchal Customary Laws as an Impediment to Gender Equality, Baboki, Jonathan Dambe (University of Botswana, Gaborone, Botswana)

Panel 3: Constitutionalism, Human Rights and International Criminal Law 

  • Power Preservation through the Constitution: A Review of Constitutional Reform in Zambia 1964-2016 Ismail, Zenobia (University of Cambridge, Cambridge, United Kingdom)
  • Local Understanding of Human Rights: A Case Study of DRC-UNICEF Sanitised Village Programme, Sundi, Pascal (Law and Development Research Group, University of Antwerp, Kinshasa, Belgium)
  • The Malabo Protocol as the New African Threshold Regarding the Compliance of International Criminal Law, Verde, Rui (Maka Angola, Luanda, United Kingdom)
  • The African Backlash Against International Courts, Brett, Peter (Roskilde University, Roskilde, Denmark)

If you have any queries or suggestions, please contact John Harrington( 


For submissions please follow the instructions on the website 


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