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ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS
CUSTOMARY COURT OF APPEAL LAW
A LAW TO ESTABLISH A CUSTOMARY COURT FOR THE HEARING OF APPEALS FROM AREA COURTS IN CIVIL PROCEEDINGS INVOLVING QUESTIONS OF CUSTOMARY LAW
Date of commencement [2nd October, 1979]
“Cause” means any action, suit or other original proceedings between a plaintiff and a defendant;
“Court” means the Customary Court of Appeal established under the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1979;
“Deputy Registrar” means the Deputy Registrar of the Court;
“High Court” means the High Court of Justice of Nasarawa State of Nigeria;
“Judge” means the President, or any judge of the Court;
“Customary Law” means the rule of conduct which governs legal relationships as established by custom and usage and not forming part of the Common Law of England nor formally enacted by the Nasarawa State House of Assembly but includes any declaration or modification of Customary Law under the Local Government Law, but does not include Islamic personal Law.
“Matter” includes any proceeding of a court not in a cause;
“Area Court” means a court established under the Area Courts Law or deemed to have been so established;
“Registrar” means the Registrar of the Court.
Establishment of Customary Court of Appeal
(2) The name of such court shall be the Customary Court of Appeal which shall be a Superior Court of record.
(3) The Court shall have jurisdiction to punish summarily for the offence commonly known as contempt of court; but a person cannot be so punished and also punished under the provisions of the penal Code Law for the same act or omission.
Constitution of the Court
(2) The Court shall be deemed to be duly constituted notwithstanding any vacancy in the office of judge thereof.
(3) The Court shall be deemed constituted for hearing of appeals under this Law if it is constituted of two Judges.
Qualification of Judges
Tenure of Office of Judges.
(2) A Judge shall at anytime resign his office by notice in writing addressed to the Governor.
Precedence of Judges
Protection of Judges
Seal of the Court
9.(1) The Court shall have and use as occasion may require a seal bearing the inscription in the English, Hausa or any Language indigenous to Nasarawa State (“The Customary Court of Appeal”).
(2) The Seal of the Court shall be kept and used as may be directed by the President.
Jurisdiction of the Court
(2) For all the purposes of and incidental to the hearing and determination of any appeal, and amendment, execution and enforcement of any judgment, order or decision made therein, the Court shall have all the powers authority and jurisdiction of every Area Court of which the judgment, order or decision is the subject of an appeal to the Court and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing, shall have all the powers conferred upon Area Courts exercising appellate jurisdiction by provision of section 59 of the Area Courts Law.
(3) Except as provided in subsection (2) of the Court shall have no original jurisdiction in any cause or matter.
(4) The Court shall have jurisdiction to review cases reported to it in accordance with section 50 of the Area Court Law.
[Jurisdiction of the Court]
(a) Any question of Customary Law regarding a marriage concluded in accordance with that Law, including a question relating to the dissolution of such a marriage or a question that depends on such a marriage and relating to family relationship or guardianship of an infant.
(b) Where all the parties are subject to Customary Law, any question regarding a marriage, including the dissolution of that marriage, or regarding family relationship, a founding or guardianship of an infant;
(c) Any question of Customary Law regarding a gift, will or succession where the endower, donor, testator or deceased person is subject to Customary Law;
(d) Any question of Customary Law regarding an infant, prodigal or person of unsound mind who is subject to Customary Law or the maintenance or guardianship or a person subject to Customary Law who is physically or mentally infirm;
(e) Where all the parties to the proceedings; (whether or not they are subject to Customary Law) have by writing under their hands requested the Court that hears the case in the first instance to determine the case in accordance with Customary Law.
Decision of the Court to be final
Law practice and procedure to be applied
Transfer to High Court
(2) The power of transfer under this section shall be exercised by means of an order under the hand of the President of the Court and the seal of the Court.
(3) Notwithstanding anything contained in any rules made by the Court to the contrary, no appeal transferred from or to the Customary Court of Appeal in accordance with the provisions under any law, shall be questioned on the ground that it has not been entered within the time prescribed for entering appeals to the court to which the appeal is transferred.
Session of the Court
Regulation of Sessions by Order
(a) The appointment of the place or places within Nasarawa State at which sessions of the Court are to be held;
(b) The appointments of the dates for holding sessions within Nasarawa State and the alteration of any such date by such authority and in such manner as may be specified in an order made under this Section where by reasons of the pressure of business or other unforeseen cause it is expedient to alter the date so appointed;
(c) Carrying into effect as may seen necessary to the President any order made under this Section and, without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing power, the attendance, jurisdiction, authority and duty of the Deputy Registrar, interpreters and officers, the use of any prison which is under the control of the Federal Government and the transmission of documents and exhibits and any matter which appears to the President to be necessary or proper for carrying in to effect any order made under this Section.
[Powers of the President of the Court to direct where Session shall hold]
(2) There may be included in an order made under this section provision for any matters including any of the matters mentioned in paragraph (c) of Section 16 for which it appears to the President to be necessary or proper to make provision of with a view to giving full effect to the order.
Appearance and representation Parties
Registrar and other Officers of the Court
[Liability of officer of Court for failure to execute an order]
Protection of persons executing warrants
Restriction on officers of Court purchasing property sold in execution
(2) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (1) nothing herein contained shall prevent any such person from purchasing by leave of the court any property sold in execution which it may be necessary for him to purchase in order to protect the interest of himself, his wife or child.
Power to make rule
(a) the prescribing and providing for:-
iii. The remission in whole or in part of any fee or reduced fee and the manner in which and the persons by whom such reduction may be made;
(b) Subject to the provision of section 13 the practice and procedure of the court;
(c) The carrying into execution of the decrees or orders of the Court;
(d) The execution of the warrant and the service of the process of the Court;
(e) Regulating the payments of allowances and traveling expenses of witnesses;
(f) Regulating any matter relating to the costs of proceedings in the Court;
(g) Defining, so far as conveniently may be defined by general rules, the duties of several officers of the court;
(h) Securing the due administration of estate;
(i) Requiring and regulating the filing of accounts of the administration of estates;
(j) Ascertaining the value of estates;
(k) Regulating and prescribing the procedure on appeals from any Area Court to the Court;
(l) Regulating the sittings of the court subject to then provisions of section 15, 16, and 17;
(m) Prescribing what part of the business which may be transacted and the jurisdiction which may be exercised by the Registrar or other officers of the court, and providing that any interlocutory application to be made in connection with or for the purpose of any appeal or proposed appeal to be heard by the Court shall be heard and disposed of before a single Judge;
(n) Prescribing forms to be used for the process and procedure of the court; and
(o) Generally for carrying into effect the provisions of this Law;
Serving with pending Civil Proceeding