Are electronic signatures legal in Nigeria?
Nigeria’s legal model is an open one. This means that unlike a tiered model (that see’s Qualified Electronic Signatures as a legitimate form of e-signature), there aren’t any conditions for electronic signature types. And so a QES won’t receive legal status.
Nigeria’s law consists of courts, offences, and various types of laws. Nigeria has its own constitution which was established on 29th of May 1999. The Constitution of Nigeria is the supreme law of the country. There are four distinct legal systems in Nigeria, which include English law, Common law, Customary law, and Sharia (Islamic) Law.
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Nigerian law highlights that a traditional signature isn’t necessarily required for a valid contract – contracts are considered valid if legally able individuals reach an agreement (this can be by agreeing verbally, electronically or by physically signing – Section 4(1) of the Electronic Commerce (Provision of Legal Recognition) Bill 2011). However these contracts may have to be supported in court with extra evidence and certified by local authorities. Electronic signature solutions can be used to provide these electronic documents, under Section 93 of the Nigerian Evidence Act.