Kogi State was created out of the old Kwara and Benue States on 27 August 1991 by the military dictatorship of General Ibrahim Babangida. Its capital, Lokoja, is the confluence point for two of West Africa’s largest Rivers, Benue and Niger leading to Kogi State’s sobriquet as “the Confluence State”.
Lokoja is also known as the first administrative capital of Northern Protectorate of Nigeria. It was in Lokoja that the name Nigeria was coined by Flora Shaw who later became the wife of Lord Frederick Lugard, one-time colonial Governor-General of amalgamated territories of Nigeria.
Geographically, Kogi State is said to be the most centrally-located of all the states in the federation. Its 29,833km2 land-mass is bounded by Niger, Kwara, Nassarawa States as well as the Federal Capital Territory to the north, Benue State to the east, Enugu and Anambra to the south, and Ondo, Ekiti and Edo State to the west.
The population of Kogi State according to a 2011 release of the National Population Commission is 3,314,043- Male: 1,672,903; Female: 1,641,140. The majority of the people are farmers. The State is abundantly blessed with fertile lands and good climatic conditions. Some of the agricultural produce from Kogi State includes yam, cassava, soya bean, cocoyam, maize, millet, rice, guinea corn, palm produce and Cowpea. There are also various mineral deposits in the State such as iron ore, mica, marble, limestone and coal.
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:
- an Executive arm of government headed by an elected Governor;
- 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;
- 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;
- and maintain the Local Government level of governance. Presently, the Nigerian Constitution prescribes 21 local Local Government Areas for the State.
- 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 Kogi State legal system comprises;
- The compendium of Constitution provisions applicable to the State as one of the 36 States that constitute the Nigerian Federation;
- Laws made by the Federal Legislature applicable throughout the entire federation or specifically to Kogi State;
- Laws made (or deemed to have been made), by the State’s legislature;
- Laws made by Local Government Councils in the State;
- Customary laws or other customs of the market place applicable under the operation of Law;
- 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;
- 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;
- 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 Kogi State Legal System include:
- 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;
- Laws of the Federation of Nigeria;
- Legislations of the National Assembly applicable to Kogi State;
- Legislations of the State House of Assembly;
- Recognized customs of the people of Kogi State;
- Judicial precedents of courts with judicial authority over Kogi State;
- Local Government edicts.
KOGI STATE BY LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREAS
LEGAL SYSTEMS OF THE FEDERATING UNITS OF NIGERIA – 37 STATES/FCT