Federal High Court bars judges from granting ex parte orders in political cases

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The Federal High Court on Monday barred its judges across the federation from granting ex parte orders in any political case brought before the court.

It also directed that all pending political cases that could affect the opportunity of candidates to pursue their political ambitions, should be concluded before the end of next month.

Ex parte orders are usually temporary (like a restraining order or temporary custody) pending a formal hearing or an emergency request for a continuance.

Chief Judge of the High Court, Justice Abdul Abdu-Karafati, gave the directives during a special session the court held to mark the commencement of its 2018/2019 Legal Year.

He disclosed that a circular had already been issued to judges to the effect “that interim orders ex-parte shall not be granted in any political cases brought before the court.”

The chief judge said: “I believe that controversies, especially in political cases, can be reduced when the court takes a decision after hearing all the parties in the case.

“It is also extremely important that all political cases that may affect any of the parties, which are still pending in any of our courts, be concluded without further waste of time to afford all candidates the the opportunity to pursue their political ambitions.

“Hon judges before whom such cases are still pending must endeavour to conclude them before the end of October, 2018.

“I urge your Lordships to be wary in handling all cases and especially cases concerning political parties and the upcoming general elections. We should again use this court and the constitution to regulate our society for the good of our children and mankind.

“I still believe that the judiciary remains the hope of all people whether common or uncommon.

“It is, therefore, your duty to ensure that the society is moulded in accordance with the rule of law and the constitution. You must therefore administer justice without fear or favour.”

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