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Written by Martin Tumasang   
Friday, 08 July 2011 00:00

Case HCB/28/92: was an Originating summons with an ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE

Summary (as posted by T before)

An order to show Cause does not permit the judge to intervene in the process until defendant has filed an affidavit Showing Cause why the judge should intervene and either vary the order or set it aside.

The plaintiff’s process papers containing the Order to Show Cause specifies the number of days within which the defendant must Show Cause. Once the defendant is served with the process, it becomes a Court Judgment Nisi. That is to say, unless the defendant shows justification for the Court to intervene and set it aside or vary it.

So if the defendant fails to either enter an appearance or if after entering appearance he fails to show cause to justify the intervention of the judge then in that case what the plaintiff has filed automatically becomes a Court judgment absolute; without any act by a judge.

Southern Cameroon's Position

1) Southern Cameroonians before claimed that this judgement does not exist and never existed. Researchers including journalist researched and said it did not exist. Fon Ndinga later clarified that the judgment did not have to exist anywhere based on the nature of the originating summons as summarised above. A newspaper that reported the case was produced. This once and for all settled the issue of the existence of the case and judgement.

2) Having exhausted the arguments on existence of the judgement, Southern Cameroonians turned their attention on the validity of the judgment. This is premised on the issue of service i.e. should a valid service be to the Governor, Procureur or other party. Southern Cameroonians failed/refuse to quote the judgment in front of relevant bodies/tribunals both national and international on the grounds that there was no proper service.


On the issue of proper service, I submit that the judgment was a judgment in rem binding on the defendants and the world at large. It is ONLY the defendants to the case that can raise the issue of service within reasonable/allowed time in the relevant court. Failure to do so, the judgment is binding against the defendants i.e. La Republique du Cameroun and Paul Biya, and against the world at large.

It is not in the mouth of the world at large to claim they will not follow the judgment in rem because service was not properly executed. The world at large were NOT defendants in the case and cannot hold brief for the defendants.

Based on the above, I humbly submit that the judgment might be binding on us all until vacated appropriately.

Using an analogy, if a court of law declares that the firing of say the MD of a corporation is valid, a third party cannot say he will still be accepting the signature or authority of the MD since there was procedural impropriety in the judgment or the rules of natural justice were not followed in the case. The third party must accept the judgment until the defendant (MD) vacates the judgment due to improper service or other procedural impropriety.



Dr Tumasang



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