The President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Zainab Adamu Bulkachuwa has cancelled this year’s Annual Justices vacation for the Court of appeal.
In a press statement sent by the media officer for the Court of Appeal Mr Saadatu Musa the decision of the president of the Court Of Appeal is as a result of the enormous petition before the court following the 2019 general election.
According to her, the president of the court said that “upon considering the enormous petitions the Court is faced with, 2019 being an election year, it became obvious that “we have to forfeit our annual vacation to enable us to entertain and determine all appeals arising from the various Election Petition Tribunals transmitted to the Court”
Mrs Musa stated that In a two-page circular signed and transmitted to all the Justices of the Appellate Court on July 2, 2019, Justice Bulkachuwa noted that since these appeals were timebound and would arise within the period of the court’s vacation on July-October, the need therefore arises for them to be heard and determined within the said period.
She further added that To enable the Court meet these targets, the President of the Court of Appeal gave explicit directives to the Presiding Justices of the various Divisions to draw up a roaster in consultation with Her office to allow the Justices with medical appointments or other pressing family issues travel for not more than 15 days within the period, adding that the roaster that would be drawn should be arranged in such a manner that at any given time there is a three (3) member panel on ground in every division to hear and determine appeals.
The release further added that In Divisions with three (3) Justices, only one (1) Justice can travel at a time and the office of the President of the Court of Appeal, is to be immediately notified to form a panel in that Justice’s absence should the need arise.
According to Justice Bulkachuwa, appeals arising from the National and State Assemblies would be heard by a local panel of three (3) members except where it is controversial, then the President will constitute and send another panel to hear it.
On the Governorship appeals, the President of the Court of Appeal disclosed that it would be heard by a five (5) Member panel to be empanelled by his lordship. Hon. Justice Bulkachuwa, therefore, instructed the Presiding Justices to notify him as soon as appeals from Governorship elections were filed to ensure their speedy determination.