Over time, news about Africa has not been encouraging, whether in relation to poverty; incessant and sporadic conflicts; ineffective leadership; or in relation to the failure of the continent to develop in spite of the vast natural resources with which it is endowed. The failure of good governance in Africa epitomises the plight of the continent, and is the result of many factors including; diverse ethnic divisions across the continent, imposition of foreign systems through colonialisation, to name a few. This thesis also identifies an important factor which is the challenge to the rule of law on the continent. For the rule of law to be established in a society, the law first has to be an integral part of the society, and has to be legitimate, and internalised by the society. For laws and the law-making processes to be legitimate, there needs to be the consent and participation of the people which the law seeks to bind. This is lacking in most African countries where laws are often vestiges of the colonial era, and where the post-colonial law-making mechanisms have not induced confidence. These situations have led to a deficit in the legitimacy of the law in Africa, and the inability of such laws to structure and govern the people; because the people have more often than not been excluded from the law-making process, nor given their consent to be bound by the laws. The resultant effect of these realities is that the laws generally lack legitimacy and are adhered to only when sanctions are attached. This thesis investigates the Constitution as the foundational law in two former British colonies in Africa, namely Nigeria and South Africa and in particular, the way in which it is made; the resultant legitimacy, and the effects on the peoples’ response and interaction with the law. This is in order to draw a nexus between the lack of legitimacy of laws in Africa (as evidenced in the constitution making processes), and the challenges faced by the rule of law on the continent, using the cases of Nigeria and South Africa.