The eradication of domestic expediency by the African court on human and peoples' rights : lessons from Europe.
The proposed African Court on Human and Peoples' Rights is an important development in the history of Africa. For the first time, there will be a regional judicial mechanism for the adjudication of human rights issues. The difficulty may lie in the manner in which the Court applies its discretion in relation to the doctrine of margin of appreciation and derogations. As a subsidiary body that has a power of review, the Court must tread warily when applying these principles. Lessons may be learnt from the well established European Court of Human Rights which has applied and developed the doctrine of margin of appreciation and has had occasion to examine the manner and extent of derogations from the European Convention. Applying this knowledge in an African context is important, but there must be discretion in that application that takes the particular circumstances of Africa into account.