Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog

Editor: Gerry W. Beyer
Texas Tech Univ. School of Law

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Nigerian Supreme Court Upholds Bini Succession Law

Court FightThe Supreme Court of Nigeria affirmed a custom known as the Bini Law of Succession in Nigeria. Under this succession law, "the first son inherits his father's place of abode (Igiogbe)." The challenge came from Edward Omorodion Uwaifo, who was seeking to set aside his father's entire will. As the first son, Edward was suppose to inherit the Igiogbe; however, his father's will gave the Igiogbe to someone else. The court ruled against the son in part but re-affirmed the customary tradition of the Bini Law of Succession by commenting that it was against Bini customary law to disinherit Edward. Justice Suleiman Galadima held that while the portion of the will that violated Bini could be set aside, the other portions in the will could be salvaged. At issue here was Pa Daniel Ediagbonya Uwaifo's house in Benin City. 

See Adelanwa Bamgboye, Atika Balal, & John Chuks Azu, Nigeria: Supreme Court Re-Affirms Bini Succession Law, allAfrica: Daily Trust, Apr. 23, 2013.

Special thanks to Brian Cohan (Attorney at Law, Law Offices of Brian J. Cohan, P.C.) for bringing this article to my attention.


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It is great to see the Law taking its cause and right decision being taken by allowing customary law to overrides the Will of an individual,which portrays that the status quo is still being retained and due process followed in attending to issues in the country's Judiciary.this is highly commendable.

Posted by: Uba Babslo | Jul 3, 2013 2:34:18 AM

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