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“We make do and keep going!” Inventive Practices and Ordered Informality in the Functioning of the District Courts in Niamey and Zinder (Niger)

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Chapter Summary

This chapter argues that the emergence of unofficial rules could also arise as a result of the state's incapacity to provide sufficient resources to its administrations. It analyzes the interactions between magistrates and members of the public from a perspective of "palliative delivery", within the bureaucratic mode of functioning. This perspective is complementary to the analysis of Tidjani Alou (2001: 64) who, with reference to the insufficient budgets allocated to the judicial system in Niger, remarks that the judicial administrations find it impossible to function normally. The chapter highlights the weakness of the public judicial service in Niger. It deals with the manifestations of inventive practices in the observed courts. The chapter presents an analysis of the discourse of the judges on their relationship with the state. The support staff in the courts of Niamey and Zinder can be divided into two categories based on their status.

Keywords: judicial system; magistrate; Niamey; Niger; Zinder



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