Judiciary-Poetry-Logo
JPoetry

CONFLICTING FACTS CAN BE PLEADED WHERE ALTERNATIVE RELIEFS ARE SOUGHT

Dictum

As rightly submitted by the Petitioners, the reliefs in this Petition, which I have reproduced at the beginning of this judgment, are undoubtedly sought in the alternative. The settled law is that reliefs can be sought in the alternative and where so sought by a party, he is at liberty to plead conflicting facts in line with the alternative reliefs he has sought. In ADIGHIJE V NWAOGU & ORS (2010) 12 NWLR (Pt. 1209) 419 at 545, paras. E G; (2010) LPELR-4941(CA) at pages 14 – 16, paras. E G, this Court, per Ogunwumiju, JCA (as he then was, now JSC), held that: “…in civil litigation and indeed in election matters, a party can make two seemingly contradictory pleadings leading to two different heads of claim. That is why a petitioner can claim that the election be annulled for reason of substantial non-compliance and in the same breath claim that he won the election by a majority of lawful notes. A petitioner may plead the same set of facts to ground alternative reliefs. Those pleadings are not ipso facto held to be self-contradictory. The Court can only grant one relief as the party must decide which relief is best supported by the evidence on record.” See also: METAL CONSTRUCTION (W.A.) LTD v ABODERIN (1998) LPELR 1868(SC) at pages 26, paras. C E.

— H.S. Tsammani, JCA. Peter Obi & Anor. v INEC & Ors. (2023) – CA/PEPC/03/2023

Was this dictum helpful?

SHARE ON

DECLARATORY RELIEFS MUST BE PROVED

It must be emphasized that declaratory reliefs are not given just for the asking. A party seeking declaratory relief must satisfy the court by cogent and proven evidence that he is entitled to such declaration. It cannot be proved half way. Where parties, as in this case, are in agreement that the land in dispute is a family land or originally founded by a family, any party who claims exclusive ownership of the land or part thereof must fail unless he is able to plead and prove by evidence how that exclusive ownership or title devolves on him.

– Denton West JCA. Salaja v. Salaja (2013)

Was this dictum helpful?

ESSENCE OF PLEADINGS

The essence of pleadings is to narrow down the issues in controversy and serves as a notice to the other party which is intended to alert him on what the party filing it intends to rely on to prove his case or to defend a cause. A party to an action is expected to plead material facts only. Pleadings therefore is never meant to substitute evidence required to prove the facts unless such facts are admitted by the other party. See Adegbite v. Ogunfaotu (1990) 4 NWLR (Pt. 146) 578. Okafoi v. UBN Plc (2000) 3 NWLR (Pt. 647) 42.

— A. Jauro, JCA. Chevron v. Aderibigbe (2011) – CA/L/76/04

Was this dictum helpful?

WHERE THERE IS VARIANCE IN PLEADINGS AND THE EVIDENCE, THE ACTION IS BOUND TO FAIL

It is clear from the foregoing that the claim of the plaintiffs as disclosed in the writ of summons and statement of claim was not supported by the evidence of the trial. It is well settled law that parties are bound by their pleadings. Where there is variance between the claim the pleadings and evidence, the action is bound to fail- See Ogiamen v. Ogiamen (1967) NMLR. 245.

— A.G. Karibi-Whyte, JSC. Olowosago V. Adebanjo (SC.134/86, 29 Sep 1988)

Was this dictum helpful?

THE COURT AND PARTIES ARE BOUND BY THE PLEADINGS

I have to state from the onset that it is settled law that issues for trial are joined in the pleadings and that parties and indeed the court are bound by the pleadings of the parties.

— Onnoghen, JSC. Kubor v. Dickson (2012) – SC.369/2012

Was this dictum helpful?

STATUTES ARE NOT TO BE PLEADED IN PLEADINGS

The position of the Appellant’s learned Counsel that the Appellant did not need to plead the provisions of p.4 of the Chinese Regulation concerning the transport of hazardous goods stems from the stated position that pleadings need no longer be technical and that it is no longer necessary to plead statutes and sections of statutes but that it is sufficient if the material facts only are pleaded.

– O. Daniel-Kalio, JCA. Egypt v. Abdoulaye (2017) – CA/K/540/2014

Was this dictum helpful?

COURTS MUST BE GUIDED BY PLEADINGS

Both courts must be fully guided by the pleadings, which in this case are the petition and the replies. If a witness gives oral evidence on what is not pleaded in either the petition or the reply, the evidence will be of no probative value based on the principle of law that parties are bound by their pleadings. If evidence is not led on a fact pleaded in either the petition or the reply the fact will be deemed to have been abandoned unless the fact was admitted by the adverse party. This is because pleadings have no mouth to talk and need human being with mouth and sense to articulate them in court. This principle of law will not apply where the particular pleading is admitted.

— Niki Tobi, JSC. Buhari v. INEC (2008) – SC 51/2008

Was this dictum helpful?

No more related dictum to show.