This ‘Land of Beauty’, as the sobriquet, goes was created in 1991 from the defunct Gongola State by the General Ibrahim Babangida led military regime. The state derives its name from Modibbo Adams a Fulani leader who led the 19thcentury jihad in Upper Benue Region. At creation, the state had four administrative divisions namely Adamawa, Ganye, Mubi and Numan. Its capital is in Yola.
Adamawa state is geographically one of the largest states in Nigeria at 36, 917 square kilometers. The landscape of the state is picturesque with mountainous land traversed by the expansive valleys of rivers Benue, Gongola and Yedsarem. The valleys of Cameroon, Mandara and Adamawa mountains also form part of this undulating landscape. It is bordered by Borno State to the north, Gombe to the west and Taraba to the southwest. Its eastern border forms part of Nigeria’s international borders with Cameroon.
The population of Adamawa State according to a recent estimate from the National Population Commission is 3,178,950- Male: 1,607,270; Female: 1,571,680. The major occupation of the people is farming. Main cash crops are cotton and groundnuts while food crops include maize, yam, cassava, millet, rice and guinea corn. The tourism industry is the most prominent industry in the state.
Currently, the State owes its legal existence to the provisions of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. As a State, it is constitutionally mandated to establish:
1. an Executive arm of government headed by an elected Governor;
2. a legislative arm of government which members shall be drawn from constituencies defined in the Constitution. Its activities are presided over by a Speaker elected by the members of the State House of Assembly which oversees the exercise of the State’s legislative energies;
3. a judicial arm made up of judges, magistrates and other officers that help in the administration of justice and related activities within the State. The judicial arm is headed by the State’s Chief Justice. Nonetheless, judicial pronouncement of the State’s tribunals are subject to the appellate review of the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court of Nigeria, in that order;
4. maintain the Local Government level of governance. Presently, the Nigerian Constitution prescribes 21 Local Government Areas for the State; and
5. mobilize the powers of the State, the institutions and resources of its arms and levels of government in order to secure a socio-economic environment for persons resident in the State and its other stakeholders to pursue legitimate goals in dignity under the State’s justice administration umbrella
The Adamawa State legal system comprises;
1. the compendium of Constitutional provisions applicable to the State as one of the 36 States that constitute the Nigerian Federation;
2. laws made by the Federal Legislature applicable throughout the entire federation or specifically to Adamawa State;
3. Laws made (or deemed to have been made), by the State’s legislature;
4. Customary laws or other customs of the market place applicable under the operation of Law;
5. Laws made by Local Governments within the State;
6. Judicial precedents of the courts of the State and of appellate courts with jurisdictions over its tribunals like the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court of Nigeria;
7. Judicial precedents of federation tribunals like the Federal High Court, the National Industrial Court, Code of Conduct Tribunal, Investments and Securities Tribunal and so on to the extent to which their mandates allow; and
8. Law enforcement institutions, law enforcement officers, judges, legal practitioners, judiciary workers, other professionals and persons recognized at various levels as part of the justice administration complex of the State.
Sources of Law for the Adamawa State Legal System include:
1. The Constitution of Nigeria (including its amendments and other laws it refers to expressly as having the same character as provisions contained within the formal Constitutional document;
2. Laws of the Federation of Nigeria;
3. Legislations of the National Assembly applicable to Adamawa State;
4. Legislations of the State House of Assembly;
5. Recognized customs of the people of Adamawa State;
6. Judicial precedents of courts with judicial authority over Adamawa State;
7. Edicts of Local Governments within the State.
The list of local governments in Adamawa State are: