Effective from Monday May 4, courts in Lagos state will begin hearing of urgent matters remotely, Chief Judge of Lagos state, Justice Kazeem Alogba, has said.
Justice Alogba said this Wednesday and also stated that time-bound interlocutory applications, such as bail applications, fundamental rights cases, adoption of final written addresses, and judgments would be delivered via this virtual process.
He further said remote court hearings became imperative in view of the coronavirus pandemic which made social distancing a necessity.
He signed the Lagos State Judiciary Remote Hearing of Cases (COVOD-19 Pandemic Period) Practice Direction.
This was pursuant to sections 6(6) and 274 of the 1999 Constitution; as well as Section 87 (1) of the High Court Law of Lagos state 2015 and Order 49 Rules 1,2 and 3 High Court of Lagos state (Civil Procedure) Rule 2019.
He said the objective of the new practice direction was “to ensure timely and efficient disposal of cases.”
By this practice direction, lawyers would file their suits electronically through e-mail or Whatsapp, even as the court papers must be in PDF format.
“Remote hearings shall be by Zoom, Skype for Business or any other video communication method approved by the court.
“Notice of a hearing shall be stated on the Cause List and the judiciary website and shall be communicated to counsel and/or parties by email, Whatsapp or any other electronic means as the court may direct.
“Counsel shall dress appropriately and parties shall be properly dressed for court proceedings.”