By Ikechukwu Nnochiri
The President of the Court of Appeal, PCA, Justice Monica Dongban-Mensem, has constituted seven special panels to expedite hearing of all pending appeals.
Justice Dongban-Mensem who announced the setting up of the panels during the maiden edition of her conference with Presiding Justices of the 20 Divisions of the Court of Appeal, said she was perturbed about backlog of appeals that are pending for adjudication.
She disclosed that the special panels will conduct two hearing sessions daily and work for three days to dispose off over 100 pending motions.
The PCA said the move became necessary, in view of lingering appeals clustering the Court owing to what she described as the unwillingness of some litigants that go into deep slumber without filing complete processes.
“The Court of Appeal cannot be used as a tool in the hands of these litigants who go into a deep slumber.
“All notices of appeal filed without being followed with other processes to ensure quick prosecution and disposal of the appeal should be shown the way out.
“We have sufficient provisions in our rules, which are backed by Constitutional provision for the disposal of matters in court”, Justice Dongban-Mensem stated.
She maintained that since the Presiding Justices are heads of their various Divisions, they should take charge and ensure quick determination of the backlog of appeals within their domain.
According to the PCA, “Since the Presiding Justices are heads of the Divisions, we have come out to dare to bite so that when we go back to our Divisions, we shall not forget to keep up the tempo.
“In a nation with teeming unemployed graduates and restive youths, we must do our part to create jobs by ensuring that all appeals are heard expeditiously, especially those which involve corporate bodies and businesses which can provide jobs for our youths”, she added.