Lukman Olabiyi, Lagos
The Chief Judge of Lagos State, Justice Kazeem Alogba, has directed magistrates in the state to return to the courtroom.
This directive was contained in a circular issued on June 25 and signed by Deputy Chief Registrar (Admin), Mrs Omolade Awope.
In the circular, the Chief Justice ordered all magistrates on grades level 15 to 17 to resume work and sit three times in a week. Magistrates between grades levels 13 and 14 are to sit twice a week
The magistrates were ordered to deliver pending judgments and rulings at their various courtrooms.
Administrative magistrates were also ordered to prepare rosters for the sitting of the magistrates in their various districts/sub-districts.
Magistrates were ordered to strictly comply with the COVID-19 directives in respect of sittings.
It was also stated that only urgent criminal applications and overnight criminal cases should be heard by the magistrates for now.
The circular further barred any magistrates from conducting fresh trials or part-trials.
The Chief Judge told the magistrates to await further directives from him as to when courts are to fully discharge other duties.