2 December 2012

Tanzania: CJ Clarifies On Lema's Election Case

THE Court of Appeal will resume sessions for hearing election related cases appealed from December 4 to 14 in three zones of Dar es Salaam, Zanzibar and Mwanza, including the Arusha MP (CHADEMA), Mr Godbless Lema's appeal.

According to Chief Justice Mohamed Chande Othman who was the chief guest at Lushoto Judicial Administration Graduation ceremony, the sessions are scheduled to take place at the end of this year. He said the procedure of the Judiciary is that the cause list is normally announced two weeks before the sessions begin.

He further said in Dar es Salaam the sessions would be conducted by three Judges of Court of appeal namely, Judge Nathalia Kimaro, Judge Bernard Luanda and Judge S. Massati. He said one of the cases to be heard in Dar es Salaam is the election appeal of the former legislator of Arusha (CHADEMA), Godbless Lema.

He however highlighted that the Court of Appeal has also some other elections cases appeals including a civil appeal number 97 of 2012 in Ubungo constituency which involved Hawa Ng'umbi versus state attorney and his two companions and another one is Civil appeal no.86 of 2012 of Ilemela constituency involving Yusuph Msengeja Lupilya with his two companions versus Highness Kiwia with two companions.

He said according to the Court of Appeal rules, the case has to be heard by three Judges out of sixteen Judges of the Court of appeal and the judges have to do so after being appointed by the Chief Justice. "In my capacity I am the Chief Justice and also a Judge of Court of Appeal, so I can lead the sessions if I am appointed as other judges but in the sessions of the end of this year I am not attending because I will be out of the country for other official assignment".

Meanwhile, the Chief Justice has said that the Judiciary was taking some serious measures to improve the judiciary services so that it could offer good service to the public. He said one of the measures in the pipeline was to employ those who possess diploma in law as Court clerks in a move to improve the system of collecting and handling of the court documents.

He said the measure also would help the diploma holders from Lushoto Judicial Administration Institute (IJA) and elsewhere to be employed after the resolution that the cadre of magistrates would be those holding a degree. The Chief Justice gave the clarification as he addressed the community of IJA in a 12th graduation ceremony held at the main campus of Lushoto.

Earlier, the graduates asked the government to see how it could help them in terms of employment as some of them after taking their diploma would be unable to proceed to a degree level. About 706 students graduated, out of them 223 were awarded with a diploma in Law and 483 earned certificates.

Meanwhile, IJA has opened a new branch in Mwanza. According to the IJA Council chairman, Judge (rtd) John Mloso briefing at 12th graduation at IJA campus in Lushoto, the number of students applying every year has kept on increasing thus the solution to it was to open another branch in a Lake zone.

He said the centre etablished in Mwanza has started this year, and about 123 students taking a course of certificate in Law. He also said that, the opening of a new branch would bring IJA service closer to many people who seek to pursue studies in law.

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