Barristers at Twenty Essex have broad experience of advising on international law and private commercial disputes across many of Africa’s 54 jurisdictions. A number of members were qualified in South Africa before qualifying at the English Bar and have a solid understanding of the continent’s local and regional legal systems, business practices, cultures and socio-political sensitivities. The set has strength in international law disputes between African states and international commercial mining and oil and gas disputes.
- Counsel in a number of South African High Court and Appellate Division cases relating to open-cast mining operations, the grant of surface-right permits, the validity and registrability of prospecting contracts, the de-watering of underground dolomitic compartments, the exercise of options to acquire mineral rights and judicial review of mining accident enquiries.
- US$55 million ICC arbitration, against Nigerian defendants following default under loan notes relating to an investment in a fund management business.
- Advising on breach of shareholders agreement and unfair prejudice, in US$1 billion. ICC Nigerian joint venture dispute.
- ICC US$22 million arbitration against collateral asset manager by five European banks arising out of the theft in Liberia, of 1.5 million bags of rice during the Ebola outbreak.
- LCIA arbitration claim against oil major Angolan subsidiary for termination of high value rig contract.
- ICC London Seat arbitration dispute concerning a $50m advance purchase of Zambian emeralds.
- Appeal to The English Commercial Court against ICC damages award following the destruction of drilling equipment during a riot at an iron ore mining plant in Guinea.
- Advising an African government on immunities and liabilities relating to sovereign guarantees in a commercial contract in a case before the HK Court of Appeal.
- US$1 billion investment arbitration under the UK-Kenya BIT concerning an investment in the mining sector.
- Counsel for Côte d’Ivoire in the maritime boundary dispute between Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana.
- Counsel for NGOs in the first case concerning freedom of expression and rights to privacy before the ECOWAS Court (Economic Community of West African States).
- Maritime Delimitation in the Indian Ocean (Somalia v Kenya) Counsel in ICJ dispute on maritime boundary dividing all the maritime areas appertaining to Somalia and to Kenya in the Indian Ocean.
- Minister for Justice and Constitutional Development v South African Litigation Centre and Others, South African Constitutional Court – counsel for Amnesty
- International intervening in the South African Constitutional Court in a test case challenging failure of the South African authorities to arrest President Bashir of Sudan for crimes of genocide.