The Federal High Court is celebrating 50 years of providing justice


The Federal High Court, FHC, will celebrate 50 years of justice delivery in Nigeria today.

FHC, which was founded on April 13, 1973, was previously known as the Federal Revenue Court.

The Federal Revenue Act of 1973 (1973 No.13) formed it, and it began with four judges and a president as its head.

The court was called the “Federal High Court” under Sections 228 (1) and 230 (2) of the Federal Republic of Nigeria Constitution of 1979.

While Justice S.O. Lambo was the first President of the Federal Revenue Court, serving from 1973 to 1975, Justice John Tsoho is the 10th and current Chief Judge of the FHC.

The court, which has expanded structurally throughout the years, now has divisions in all of the federation’s states, including Abuja, where its headquarters are located.

As part of its capacity-building and human-development efforts, the FHC has launched an electronic filing platform.

Yunusa Ibrahim, an Abuja-based legal practitioner, called FHC’s 50-year involvement in justice delivery as a watershed moment in the administration of justice.

He stated that the court’s various judgements and decisions have made a significant contribution to the delivery of justice.

According to Ibrahim, the Federal High Court (Civil Procedure) Rules, 2000 were created by Justice Tsoho in accordance with Section 254 of the 1999 Constitution (as amended) to promote the rapid adjudication of civil cases and matters before the court.

He said that the guidelines included various novel features for the just and fast resolution of issues.

Furthermore, Josephine Ijekhuemen, a legal practitioner, stated that the role of the court in the Nigerian judiciary cannot be overstated.

She stated that the new Electoral (Amendment) Act of 2022 granted the FHC more jurisdiction to hear and decide pre-election complaints because of its critical role.

While delivering a speech at a special court session to mark the start of the court’s 2022/2023 Legal Year on December 12, 2022, Justice Tsoho stated that in response to the enormous time-bound responsibility imposed by the new Electoral Act, he formed a special task force of judges to expedite the resolution of pre-election matters.

Given that Section 285 (10) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended) requires pre-election cases to be resolved within 180 days of filing, the CJ drafted judges from their substantive bases to assist in completing all pre-election cases in other judicial divisions that had a backlog of cases ahead of the 2023 general elections.

As a result, he praised the judges for their fortitude and simple will to deliver justice on time.

He also thanked Nigeria’s Chief Justice, Justice Olukayode Ariwoola, for authorizing an emergency fund to assist the court with the job.

Tsoho informed judges and workers of a better welfare package during one of the programs for the 2022/2023 Legal Year.

Despite the fact that the court had 76 judges across all divisions countrywide, the CJ stated that attempts would be made to recruit more judges.

He stated that the procedure for appointing judges to the court’s bench would also be based on competence and merit.

Only individuals with intellectual ability and broad and sound knowledge, he said, would be considered for appointment to the Federal High Court Bench.

Justice Tsoho exhorted the justices to constantly carry out their responsibilities in the fear of God.

Source: NAN

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