THE STATUS OF THE STATE’S SPECIAL SNITCH;
A LEGAL CRITIQUE OF THE FRAMEWORK FOR WHISTLEBLOWING IN NIGERIA
In recent times, due to the increasing spate on sensitization against corruption in Nigeria, one popular word that has suddenly gained much prominence is ‘whistleblowing’. In a bid to fight corruption, the Nigerian Federal Government has recently launched several programmes and incentives to encourage popular deterrence from corrupt actions and to intensify the public confidence in reporting corrupt practices. One of such incentives is the establishment of an administrative process for whistleblowing.
Prior to this sudden ascension to fame and popularity of whistleblowing, there appeared to be, hitherto, no legal, regulated or structural framework for whistleblowing in Nigeria. The legislative attention thereto, seems to have consciously progressed in 2015 with the advent of a new democratic dispensation. Whereas, in other jurisdictions across the globe, the legal framework and structural process for whistleblowing had since been clearly defined and delimited in areas relating to corruption, employment matters, criminal conducts and security dealings, amongst others, the legal structure for same, on the other hand, recently commenced the journey for precision.
Whistleblowing is the disclosure by a person or body of persons, of information about matters of ‘public interest’ relating to an alleged wrongdoing or criminal conduct by a person or group of persons. The term “whistleblowing” is said to have been coined by a U.S. Civic Activist, Ralph Nader in the early 1970s in a deliberate attempt to avoid words with similar meanings but with negative and derogatory innuendoes like “informer” and “snitch” etc.
This Article examines the legal framework for whistleblowing in Nigeria, the new reforms introduced by the structural framework, the protection for whistleblowers and the policy objectives of such reforms. It also makes a proposal for a further reform of the existing structures and the extension of regulations on whistleblowing to many industry aspects including public governance and corruption, corporate governance, employment matters, tax evasion and security dealings.
The subject of whistleblowing has generated heated scholarly debates and controversies. Various schools of thoughts exist as to the philosophical basis for whistleblowing and this polarization has split public opinion on the subject. While a school of thought holds that it is ethical and a form of civic duty which must be protected and preserved, the other school of thought opines that whistleblowing is unethical as it breaches duty of confidentiality, especially where the whistleblower stands in a relational position with the subject of his disclosure.
The Pro-Whistleblowing arguments for canvassing that whistleblowing should be encouraged, that disclosures by whistleblowers should be properly dealt with and that whistleblowers should be protected are premised on the ground that whistleblowing promotes good governance, public accountability and the fight against corruption. This school of thought believes that in jurisdictions where whistleblowing is freely encouraged, there is a disincentive to commit crimes covered by the whistleblowing policy as potential culprits would be circumspect of other people before participating in a criminal enterprise. While we strongly agree that whistleblowing indeed is a deterrence policy to discourage commission of criminal conducts and an incentive to report such reprehensible conducts, no empirical justification has confirmed these positions. In fact, there is no statistical basis for confirming that jurisdictions with firmly entrenched whistleblowing policies have lesser crimes rates than jurisdictions with no such policy. Significantly, whistleblowing is only possible if third parties are aware of the commission of the offence. Accordingly, crime rates would remain at the same level, notwithstanding whistleblowing policies, if the commission of the crime is kept secret and confidential by the offenders while the knowledge of the criminal venture is restricted only to the participes criminis.
On the other hand, the sole argument being canvassed in opposition to whistleblowing is the fact that it violates moral and legal duties. On moral grounds, whistleblowers usually stand in a relational position to the subject of their disclosures e.g. domestic staff (drivers, cleaners, cooks e.t.c.), employees, neighbours etc. It is arguable that such persons usually make the disclosure not because of a genuine need to prevent crime commission or for public interest but because of some inordinate objectives far from public interest. Such inordinate objectives include hatred, envy, or monetary benefit from the whistleblowing reward. It is also arguable that such ‘immoral’ actions violating the golden rule of neighbourhood should not be encouraged by the State as same promotes social disintegration.
From the legal point of view, opponents of whistleblowing are quick to mention that in the whistleblowing process, whistleblowers commit crimes themselves. One of such crimes relates to the means or manner by which the whistleblower obtains his information. It is noteworthy that the right to privacy is a fundamental right guaranteed under the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Whistleblowers, more often than not, go as far as violating right to privacy and duty of confidentiality in making disclosures. It is opined that such breach of duty or criminal conduct should not be swept under the carpet because the state wants to correct a public wrong.
In the English case of Aspinall v MSI Mech Forge Ltd the employee (who was on sick leave recovering from an accident at work) asked a colleague to secretly video the machinery that he alleged was unsafe and had caused his accident. When the employer found out about the existence of the video, it was concerned that the secrecy of its manufacturing processes may have been compromised, and sought to discover who was responsible, with a view to taking disciplinary action. It was held that, albeit obiter, obtaining evidence is distinct from disclosing it, and the making of the video may not be covered under the whistleblowing protection if it involves misconduct. In a similar vein, in Bolton School v Evans, an employee told his employer that he believed the firm’s IT system was not secure. He then went on to prove his point by hacking into the system. The employer took the view that unauthorised hacking constituted misconduct, and gave him a warning. The Court of Appeal held that hacking was a separate act which was not protected by the whistleblowing legislation. The argument therefore is centered on the question that: why should the State promote a conduct which promotes wrongdoings in an attempt to curb criminal conducts?
The counter argument to the breach of privacy and confidentiality usually occasioned by whistleblowing may be summarised in the full legal Latin maxim expressed as “interest reipublicae ne maleficia remaneant impunita” i.e. it is a matter of public interest that wrongdoings are not left unpunished. Thus, public rights override private rights. A person’s private right to privacy cannot supersede the public interest to get public wrongs punished. This view is supported by the fact that under the common law, there is generally no confidence as to the disclosure of iniquity. Accordingly, judicial authorities have lent credence to the fact that there are circumstances in which public policy (or interest) overrides an implied or express duty of confidentiality including those owed by employees to their employer.
Is there a legal duty to whistleblow?
The pertinent question is whether the act of reporting of crimes to appropriate authorities is a duty of every citizen; in which case, it carries a corresponding right or whether there is no such general duty in law to whistleblow; in which case, it is merely a privilege. The importance of this question is that a legal answer to this question will, in turn, impact on a lot of legal issues on the subject, including but not limited to, the obligation of a whistleblower to report crime, the treatment of any information disclosed by a whistleblower and the right of entitlement to a reward by the whistleblower,
The starting point is the dictum of Akeju, JCA in Enanuga & Ors. v. Sampson, where the Court of Appeal held as follows:
“The law imposes a duty on the appellants to report the commission of a crime witnessed or experienced by them and a person or persons who report such commission of crime to police and leave the police to investigate such report within their exclusive discretion cannot thereby incur any liability. See Fajemirokun vs. C. B. (Nig) Ltd. (2009) 5 NWLR (Pt. 1135) 588, (2009) All FWLR (Pt. 457) 1; (cited by counsel) Gbajor vs. Ogunburegui (1961) All NLR (1) 882; Bassey vs. Alfa (2010) All FWLR (Pr. 531) 1477”
Similarly, in Mduka v. Ubah & Ors., the Court of Appeal, per Iyizoba, JCA further held as follows:
“Indeed, every citizen has a right or even a duty to report to the Police anyone suspected of committing a crime and the Police have a corresponding duty to investigate the report in the course of their statutory function of prevention, detection of crimes and generally preservation of law and order”
The above position of the law also received the judicial anointing of the Supreme Court of Nigeria in Fajemirokun v. Commercial Bank (Credit Lyonnais) Nigeria Limited and Anor where the apex court held as follows:
“Generally, it is the duty of citizens of this country to report cases of commission of crime to the Police for their investigation and what happens after such report is entirely the responsibility of the Police. The citizens cannot be held culpable for doing their duty unless it is shown that it is done mala fide”
The above judicial expositions clearly confirm the position that every citizen has a legal duty to report the commission of a crime which occurs to his knowledge. This duty carries a corresponding duty for the appropriate authority to whom the report is made, to investigate and act on the report. The law has also afforded a protection, against culpability, for citizens in the exercise of this duty, so long as the reporting of the crime was based on reasonable suspicion and not actuated by express malice. In Seed Vest Microfinance Bank Plc & Anor. v. Ogunsina & Ors., Denton-West, JCA stated the law as follows:
“Now, a plethora of cases have held that any complaint made or information given to those interested in investigating a matter (the police) will in the interest of the society be privileged, once there is a reasonable belief that a crime has been committed. In the case of Oceanic Securities International Limited vs. Alh. Bashir Olaide Balogun & Ors., the Court held thus: “Generally, it is the duty of citizens of the country to report cases of commission of crime to the police for their investigation and what happen after such report is entirely the responsibility of the police. The citizens cannot be held culpable for doing their duty, unless it is shown that it is done mala fide.” It therefore flows from the foregoing that in answering the question on Issue Two (2), that the reporting of a commission of a crime to the police does not make the reporter culpable so long as it was not done in bad faith”
It is therefore clear that under the Nigerian legal system, aside from the promise of any reward or moral obligation, every citizen has a legal duty to whistleblow. However, there are no legal consequences for failure to perform this duty except where the party involved takes any active or passive participation in the criminal enterprise either before or after the commission of the offence or by way of neglect to prevent a felony.
Public Sector, Governance and Corruption
The major sector in Nigeria in which whistleblowing has gained much prominence is the public sector and governance. This attention cannot be divorced from the fact that Nigeria is consistently ranked as one of the most corrupt Nations in the world. A survey by Transparency International reported that Nigeria scored 28 points out of 100 on the 2016 Corruption Perceptions Index. The statistics evidences a continuous rise in the rate of corruption, as the Corruption Index in Nigeria was 20.17 points in 1996, rising to 28 points as at 2016.
The superior courts of Nigeria had consistently, in notable pronouncements, expressed the judicial attitude to corruption and the fight against corruption. In Altimate Inv. Ltd v. Castle & Cubicles Ltd, the Court of Appeal, per Omokri, JCA took judicial notice of the prevalence of corruption in Nigeria and held as follows:
“…it is important to mention that this is a time when the Nigerian nation is fighting the difficult battle against corruption in all its ramification. All hands should be on deck to eliminate or eradicate this social ill. Corruption or corrupt practices, if not checked, threaten the peace, order and good government. Uwais CJN (as he then was) in Attorney-General, Ondo State v. Attorney-General, Federation (2002) FWLR (Pt. 111) 1972) at 2070-2071, (2002) 9 NWLR (Pt. 772) 222 at 306 said: ‘Corruption is not a disease which afflicts public officers alone but society as a whole. If it is therefore to be eradicated effectively, the solution to it must be pervasive to cover every segment of the society.’ Mohammed JSC at page 2106 FWLR or page 347-348 of NWLR said: ‘It is quite plain that the issue of corruption in the Nigerian society has gone beyond our borders. It is no more a local affair. It is a national malaise which must be tackled by the government of the Federal Republic. The disastrous consequences of the evil practice of corruption has taken this nation into the list of the most corrupt nations on earth…’ Ogwuegbu JSC at page 2098 of FWLR or pages 337-339 of NWLR referred to the preamble of Chief Afe Babalola SAN in his brief in the appeal where he said: ‘It is a notorious fact that one of the ills which have plagued and are still plaguing the Nigerian nation is corruption in all facets of our national life. It is an incontrovertible fact that the present economic, morals and or quagmire in which the country finds itself is largely attributable to the notorious virus which is known as corruption. This court is bound to take judicial notice of these facts and is so invited to so…’ It is from this background that I say that the ruling of the learned trial judge is commendable and it has the effect of sanitizing the polluted and corrupt society”
Flowing from the foregoing, there is an imperative need to ensure a structured system for reporting of corrupt practices to aid the fight against corruption. In Yakubu & Anor. v. FRN, Augie JCA (as she then was) held as follows:
“Officers of ICPC are not robots or puppets on strings; they cannot be put into a box or enclosure and told not to move beyond a point. They are empowered by the Act to investigate allegations of corruption made against any person. They do not go into the streets to fish out allegations but act on the reports made to them…”
There is currently no major legal framework for Whistleblowing in Nigeria relating to public governance and corruption, except for the Whistleblowers Bill which is currently pending at the National Assembly and the administrative process for whistleblowing put in place by the Federal Ministry of Finance.
The Whistleblowers Bill
The Whistleblowers Bill is currently in the Parliament. Under the Bill, any person who believes on reasonable grounds that a public officer or body has engaged, is engaging or proposes to engage in improper conduct in their capacity as a public officer or body or has taken, is taking or proposes to take improper conduct or detrimental action may make a disclosure about such act. Such disclosure, shall be made to the Public Complaints Commission (PCC) in writing or orally.
The Bill provides that a disclosure can be made anonymously– a person may make a disclosure about someone regardless of whether they can identify the person or body, and a person may make a disclosure about an act that happened before the commencement of the Bill.
With a view to protect the blowers from reprisals, the Bill provides that a protective disclosure may be made in accordance with the provisions of this Bill and the blower shall not be subject to any civil or criminal liability. It further invalidates any provision in a contract that precludes a person from making a disclosure.
The Bill further provides that a person who takes detrimental action against a person in reprisal for a protected disclosure is liable in damages to that person, and such person against whom a detrimental action has is empowered to apply to the High Court for an order for the person to remedy the action or an injunction.
Under the Bill, a person who takes detrimental action against a person in reprisal for a protected disclosure, commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding N300,000 or to imprisonment of not more than 2 years or both and a person to whom a disclosure is made, who without reasonable cause discloses that information commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding N100,000 or to imprisonment or both.
The threshold for any information qualified for reward and protection under the Bill is the public interest ground. The Bill provides that if anyone makes a disclosure to the Chief Commissioner, the Chief Commissioner shall within a reasonable time after receiving the disclosure, determine whether the disclosure is of public interest. In deciding, the Chief Commissioner must be satisfied that the disclosure indicates that a public officer or body has engaged, is engaging or proposes to engage in improper conduct in their capacity as a public officer or body; or has taken or is taking detrimental action in contravention of the Act.
Being mindful of the chances of unscrupulous reports by mischievous informers, the Bill provides that the Chief Commissioner shall not investigate a matter if the disclosure is trivial, frivolous/vexatious or if the person making the disclosure had knowledge for more than 12 months and failed to give a satisfactory explanation for the delay in making the disclosure; and it also empowers the Chief Commissioner to refer a disclosed matter to another body to investigate if the matter relates to an officer or employee of the public body.
For purposes of conducting a robust investigation, the Commission is empowered to request the Inspector General of Police to make available members of the police force to assist in the investigation of a disclosed matter; or request a prescribed public body to make available, staff to assist in the investigation of a disclosed matter. The investigation on the disclosed matter shall be in private, and no hearing is required for the investigation of a disclosed matter.
In the conduct of an investigations, obligations to maintain confidentiality do not apply to the disclosure of information for the purposes of an investigation by the Chief Commissioner of a disclosed matter; and in the same vein, the Federal Government is not entitled to any privilege in respect of producing documents or giving evidence in relation to investigation of a disclosed matter and a person who made the disclosure must be informed of the outcome of the investigation within a reasonable time after the completion of the investigation. This is however not applicable if the informant is anonymous.
The Administrative Framework for Whistleblowing
The Federal Ministry of Finance (FMF) with the approval of the Federal Executive Council in December 2016 initiated a whistle blowing programme, aimed at laying down a framework for deterring corruption and encouraging the recovery of stolen public funds in Nigeria. Thus, in a bid to assist in combating corruption and corrupt practices, the Ministry designed a whistleblowers platform which is aimed at encouraging anyone with information about a violation of financial regulations, mismanagement of public funds and assets, financial malpractice, fraud and theft to report it.
The objectives of the policy are to support the fight against financial crimes and corruption, improve the level of public confidence in public entities, enhance transparency and accountability in the management of public funds, improve Nigeria’s Open Government Ranking and Ease of Doing Business Indicators, increase exposure of financial or financial related crimes and to ensure recovery of public funds that can be deployed to finance Nigeria’s infrastructure deficit.
Under the policy, a blower upon making available disclosures to the FMF which leads to the discovery of funds or assets is entitled to between 2.5%-5.0% of the amount recovered; with an assurance of his/her identity being protected. The FMF, on its whistleblowing portal, provides, for the purpose of ensuring adequate protection of whistleblowers, that any Stakeholder who whistle blows in public-spirit and in good faith will be protected, regardless of whether or not the issue raised is upheld against any party. It further provides that a Stakeholder (internal or external) who has made a genuine disclosure and who feels that, as a result, he or she has suffered adverse treatment in retaliation should file a formal complaint to an independent panel of inquiry, that shall be setup to handle such complaint, detailing his/her adverse treatment.
Is the Reward of Whistleblowers enforceable in law?
It was recently reported in the media that the Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) indicated on Thursday, 9 November 2017 that the man who informed the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission of the $43m, N23.2m and £27,800 (N13bn) recovered from an Ikoyi apartment in April, may be given about N325m in the light of the Federal Government’s whistle-blower policy.
From a legal perspective, we would consider if a whistle-blower’s reward is enforceable in law and if the Government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria is under compulsion to honour such obligation in every situation.
Firstly, it is instructive to note that the whistleblower policy of the FMF has not been enacted in any written law. Thus, it currently remains a policy of the Federal Government. In the case of the Fed Military Govt v Sani the Court of Appeal per Akpata JCA held that the policy of any government which has not received the force of law cannot be the basis for punitive or protective measure. Accordingly, such a policy remains what the Government intends to do, and no cause of action may be instituted by a whistleblower to enforce the dictates of the policy. The whistleblower may therefore have to resort to remedies provided under contract law.
From the law of contract perspective, the FMF policy and the whistleblower’s reward will only become enforceable if there are indicia of a valid contract known to law. A valid contract in law will typically comprise of the essential ingredients, to wit; an offer, a valid acceptance, a consideration, an intention to create legal relations and a capacity to contract. In whistleblowing situations, it is indeed not difficult to identify the contractual offer as the promise of a reward made to the whole world by the FMF constitutes an offer similar to that of the popular case of Carlill v. Carbolic Smokeball Company. The act of performing the requirement of the offer – which is the whistleblowing and the discreet report to law enforcement agents is a valid acceptance in law. Once, the offer is accepted by an adult person or an entity known to law, contractual capacity cannot be doubted. The legal obstacles are in relation to consideration and the requirement of intention to create legal relations.
Consideration under the law of contract, in the ordinary sense, refers to the price pays by a party to be entitled to the reward by the other party. In the case of Currie v. Misa, Lush J held that “a valuable consideration in the eye of the law may consist either in some right, interest, profit or benefit accruing to the one party, or some forbearance, detriment, loss or responsibility, given, suffered or undertaken by the other party.” Before a party can successfully enforce a promise, the law will require the price paid by the party for the enforcement of that promise – this is the requirement of consideration.
Does the act of whistleblowing constitute a sufficient consideration for the enforcement of the promise of a reward? Firstly, it must be understood that based on the long line of authorities mentioned above, it is the duty of every citizen to report the commission of a crime which occurs to his knowledge. Accordingly, the act of crime reporting is a statutory duty. It is settled law that the performance of a statutory or public duty, does not constitute a sufficient consideration in the eye of the law. Thus, a party cannot enforce a promise made to him in return for his performance or promise to perform a legal, public or statutory duty, In Collins v. Godefroy, Lord Tenterden, CJ held that an express promise of remuneration for the performance of a legal duty should be void as having been made without consideration. Accordingly, in view of the fact that whistleblowing is a legal duty, the act will not constitute a sufficient consideration required to make a valid contract in law.
On the requirement of an intention to create legal relations, can the Federal Government successfully argue that the promise of a reward for whistleblowers is a “mere puff” to encourage the act of whistleblowing and that it did not intend to enter into contractually binding legal relations with the advertisement on the FMF portal? In Carlill v. Carbolic Smokeball Co. (supra), the test in determining whether such an advertisement is a mere puff or not, is an objective one. The Court will take into consideration the surrounding circumstances and how the public will objectively construe the advertisement. Based on this test, it is not doubtful that the nature of the FMF’s publication of the whistleblower’s reward shows sincerity of the promise, as in the Carlill’s case (supra), and therefore evidences an intention to create legal relations.
Whistleblowing framework in other sectors – Employment, Corporate Governance, Securities and Tax
It is generally argued that employees have a fiduciary duty of loyalty to their employer. This obligation is so fundamental to the relationship that it binds employees without having to be spelled out in writing. However, the Whistleblower legislations creates an exception to that duty. In the Nigerian employment sector, the Code of Corporate Governance, 2011 for Public Companies provides that companies should have a whistleblowing policy which should be known to employees, stakeholders such as contractors, shareholders, job applicants, and the public. The Code further places a responsibility on the Board of Directors of public companies and private companies which choose to adopt same, to prioritize the implementation of such a policy and to establish a whistle-blowing mechanism for reporting any illegal or substantial unethical behavior.
In the banking sector, the Central Bank of Nigeria in 2012, with a view to fight corruption and fraud in the industry, released its ‘Guidelines for Whistle-blowing in the Nigerian Banking industry’ establishing whistle-blowing as a means of exposing corruption and fraud. The guidelines make it mandatory for all financial institutions in Nigeria to have internal Whistleblowing policies which are made known to employees and stakeholders.
The SEC Rules and Regulations also makes provisions for Whistleblowing, by obligating Compliance Officers of Capital Market Operators to report incidents of non-compliance, breaches of procedures within an organization. Further, Section 306 of the Investments and Securities Act, 2007 provides that an employee of a capital market operator or public company shall have the right to disclose any information connected with the activities of his work place which tends to show that a criminal offence has been, is being or is likely to be committed; that a person has failed, is failing, is likely to fail or otherwise omitted to comply with any legal obligation to which he is subject; or that any disclosure tending to show any matter has been, is being or is likely to be deliberately concealed. Furthermore, the Act with a view to protect the Whistleblowing employee provides that no employer shall subject an employee to any detriment by any act or any deliberate failure to act on the ground that the employee has made a disclosure in accordance with the provisions of the Act.
While we confirm that the establishment of a regulated whistleblowing system is essential for the development of any civilized society, we are of the opinion that the system, despite its gains is susceptible to abuse as it is currently structured. We therefore recommend that the Federal Government’s policy on whistleblowing should be backed with the force of law and the pending Whistleblower’s Bill should be enacted by the National Assembly. We have noted that currently, the “State’s Special Snitches” are not safe and we therefore call for the immediate enactment of the Bill into a law, so that whistleblowers can take advantage of the protective measures and safeguards provided by the Bill.
 See Vandekerckhove, Wim (2006). Whistleblowing and Organizational Social Responsibility: A Global Assessment. Ashgate
 Section 37 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended) provides that “The privacy of citizens, their homes, correspondence, telephone conversations and telegraphic communications is hereby guaranteed and protected”
  EWCA (Civ) 1653
 Gartside v Outram  26 LJ Ch (NS) 113
 See Initial Services v Putteril  1 QB 396 and Lion Laboratories Ltd v Evans  QB 526
 To every legal right, there has to be a correlative obligation or duty.
 (2012) LPELR-8487(CA)
 (2014) LPELR-23966(CA)
 (2009) 5 NWLR (Pt. 1135) 558 at 600, 505 – 606
 (2016) LPELR-41346(CA),
 Either as an aider or enabler of the principal offender or assists in procuring the commission of the offence. See generally Section 7(b), (c) and (d) of the Criminal Code Act, Cap. C33, LFN 2004.
 By way of conspiracy or common intention to commit an offence. See generally Sections 8 and 516 – 518 of the Criminal Code Act (supra).
 See generally Section 10 of the Criminal Code Act (supra).
 By Section 515 of the Criminal Code Act (supra), every person, who, knowing that a person designs to commit or is committing a felony, fails to use all reasonable means to prevent the commission or completion thereof, is guilty of a misdemeanor and is liable to imprisonment for two years.
 Transparency International (2016). Available at: https://www.transparency.org/news/feature/corruption_perceptions_index_2016
 (2008) All FWLR (Pt. 417) 124 at 132 – 133, Pp. 151 – 152, paras. C – B (CA).
 (2009) LPELR-8848(CA)
 Section 4
 Section 6
 Section 10
 Section 14
 Section 15.
 Section 13
 Section 17
 Section 18
 Section 23
 Section 25
 Section 26
 Section 28
 Section 32
 Section 38
 (1989) 4 NWLR (Pt. 117) 624 @ 644
 Omega Bank ((Nig.) Plc v. O.B.C. Ltd. (2005) 8 NWLR (928) 547 at 583 H; and Tsokwa Oil Marketing Co. Nig Ltd v. Bank of the North (2002)5 SCNJ 176
  1 AC 256
 (1875) L.R. 10 Exch. 153@ 162
 (1831) 1 B& Ad. 950; 109 ER 1040