Th e 2005 reform initiated by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS)
had the double eff ect of putting an end to ten years of judicial lethargy and positioning
its Community Court of Justice (ECCJ) as a promising international human rights body.
One of the most illustrative cases of the Court’s impact is the landmark Koraou (Slavery)
judgment in which the ECCJ condemned Niger for failing to protect the complainant
from enslavement by a third party. Five years aft er the Koraou decision, this paper uses
empirical based theories, case study and factual evidence to interrogate whether the
ECCJ’s judgment has had any further eff ect than just restoring the dignity of an individual
litigant. Such assessment is important to thousands of other human beings who still live in
bondage in the rest of the region. Ultimately, the paper seeks to demonstrate that although
it has not reached the irradiating model of the European Court of Human Rights, the
ECCJ has the potential of becoming a human rights promoter in the region and beyond.