(Take From Judgment Writing teaching material JLSRI ,By Misker Getahun & Tafese Yirga)
For the prime reason that there is no adequate source material to deal with the entire history and tradition of judgment and judgment writing in Ethiopia only, a brief account of discussion on the topic will be made in the forthcoming section. As such, the discussion will be based on the period from the reign of Emperor Zar'a Ya'eqob,(1434-1468) which marked the end of monarchical rule and the beginning of a new era.
In the legal history of Ethiopia the first codified law of the country is coined with the name Zar'a Ya'eqob, who directed the compilation of the then existing legal norms by and through the Ethiopian Orthodox Church scholars. This law was known as "Fewuse Menfesawi", which has the literal meaning of "spiritual remedies". The contextual translation of same is "cannonical penances." Emperor Zar'a Ya'eqob was not only the reason for the compilation of the then existing legal norms of the country in to a code,but he is also credited for making an order which resulted in the bringing of the copy of the so called "Fetha Negest" (the law of the kings) from Egypt and had it translated in to Ge'ez, which was the then working language of the country.
Another incident which has a historical as well as legal significance in the country came at the year 1931, which unfolded the promulgation of the first written constitution of Ethiopia by virtue of the then reigning Emperor of the country, Haile Sellasie I, whichestablished a two -chamber parliament (members of which were appointed by himself).
In between these great historical incidents i.e., the promulgation of the first ever written constitution of 1931 and the compilation of the ‘fewuse menfesawi’ oral as well as some foreign travelers’ travel memories (diaries) give evidence to the fact that the people of Ethiopia, then administered by local chiefs and tribe leaders, having their own small area to administer, were subjected to a particular norms and custom that were prescribed by the chief of the society.
Administrative law is mostly tied with the study of manner of exercise of governmental power. By governmental power here refers to power of the executive and administrative agencies. The evolution of administrative law may be traced back to the emergence and proliferation of agencies.
The outstanding feature of administrative agencies in the history of Ethiopian government is their non-existence. For instance, a century back there were no regularly established royal councils, no clear cut system of local government, no established national army police force and no civil service system. Agencies as a machinery of public administration is relatively a recent phenomena in Ethiopia.
The consent of a woman is given through her guardian while a man directly gives his consent by himself. So the contract of marriage is made between the guardian and the future husband. The guardian could be a particular or general guardian. The general guardian is a court judge where the woman has no guardian who is a blood relative. Particular guardians are either the father, in leau of him a brother who attained majority or an uncle from the side of her father.
Abu Hanafi has not accepted a representation of a woman by a guardian unless the woman is a young, an insane i.e. disabled for whatever reasons. Whether the consent is given directly by the woman or through her guardian it should not be defective. Any factor that has the power to influence and affect the normal functioning of the human mind can become a cause for defective consent.
Jurists divide the causes into two kinds: natural causes [samawiyah] and acquired causes [mukeasabah]. Now we will, briefly, discuss both and their further classification
Until August 2010, no law stipulating direct imposition of price on goods and services did exist in Ethiopia. However, a new law passed by parliament, has changed the system of price regulation. The Trade Practice and Consumers’ Protection Proclamation No. 685/2010, which became a law on 16th August, 2010, gives a conditional discretion to the Ministry of Trade and Industry to impose a ceiling on the price of goods and services. The said proclamation contains 58 articles most of them drafted broadly and exhaustively regulating unfair trade practices. Only one provision mentions about the possibility of fixing the price of goods by the Ministry. This article, titled, regulating the price of basic goods and services, reads
"The Ministry, when deemed necessary, submits to the Council of Ministers its study on basic goods and services that shall be subject to price regulation and upon approval publish their list and prices in public notices."Apart from the grammatical mistake, one can easily notice vagueness and lack of clarity in formulating the content of the article. The provision grants wider discretion to the Ministry, though subject to the conditions of preparation of a study and approval by the Council of Ministry. It is not clear as to the necessary preconditions or circumstances leading to initiating research by the Ministry. It is simply a matter of discretion to the Ministry. In other words, the price of goods may be fixed 'when deemed necessary' by the Ministry. Given the exceptional nature the need for direct government interference in fixing price, one will wonder why such wider power was given to the Ministry. There is also a reference to a 'study' on basic goods and services. The content, method and effect of the study is also not clearly provided in the provision. what is to be studied? what is its scope? is it limited to collecting data on the price on the market? Does it mean price fixation is subject to the results of the study? The failure to incorporate mechanisms which ensure transparency and public participation in the process of conducting a study aiming at the need for price fixation, could be a ground for potential misappropriate use of such power . It could also lead to diminishing public acceptance of similar measures in the future.There is another unsettled issue. Who actually determines or fixes the price of basic goods and services after a study is conducted to this effect? is it the Ministry or the Council of Ministers? One way to interpret the provision is that the Ministry only submits the list of goods to be subjected to price fixation, without indicating the proposed prices. Secondly, the provision could also mean that the study to submitted shall include the specific prices and hence the power of approval of Council of Ministers extends to the specific prices.