Law versus Coronavirus: Issues of Legality, Necessity and Adequacy

By Babacar Kanté, Ph.D.

Former Constitutional Court Judge, Senegal

Former Professor and Dean, Faculty of Law, University of Gaston Berger


According to many experts, the new coronavirus which emerged in December 2019 is no more serious than other pandemics mankind already experienced. Nevertheless, it is unprecedented, both in terms of its brutal and speedy spread, as well as its wide-ranging political, economic, social, cultural and environmental impact. By April 2020, four months after its emergence, it had affected two hundred and four (204) countries and territories, that is more than the total United Nations membership, and the death toll standing at 364,000 as of 30 May 2020. In this chaotic situation, governments are endeavoring to provide emergency responses, in almost every aspect of public and private life, giving at times the impression of muddling through rather than implementing a well-thought-out strategy.