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COUNSEL SHOULD INDICATE WHAT GROUND AN ISSUE WAS RAISED FROM

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As can be observed, the issues formulated in the Appellant’s brief are indicated to have distilled from grounds 2 and 8 of the Appellant’s Notice of Appeal while there is no indication by the Respondent’s Counsel, from which of the grounds of the appeal, since there is no cross appeal here or a Respondent’s notice, the additional issue was raised. The requirement of diligent of brief writing in the appellate Courts is that counsel should indicate from which grounds of an appeal every issue/s submitted for determination in an appeal, was/were distilled.

– Garba, JCA. Dunlop v. Gaslink (2018)

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MOTION ON NOTICE FOR OFFENDING GROUNDS

Where other grounds of appeal can sustain an appeal a Preliminary objection should not be filed, rather a Motion of Notice should be filed against the offending grounds of appeal. – Rhodes-Vivour JSC. Nwaolisah v. Nwabufoh (2011)

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GROUNDS WHERE NO ISSUES ARISE FROM ARE DEEMED STRUCK OUT

It is trite that by the rules of practice and procedure, in particular, of the appellate Courts, appeals are to be determined on the issues distilled from the competent grounds of appeal raised against the judgment being appealed. Therefore, any ground of appeal from which no issue has been formulated is deemed to have been abandoned and is liable to be discountenanced and struck out by the Court. Indeed, any such ground is lifeless and may not need a specific order to have it struck out yet should still be struck out. In this appeal, no issue has been formulated from grounds 4, 5, 6, 7 & 8 of the Amended Notice of Appeal. Meaning that those grounds are deemed abandoned. Accordingly, the said grounds 4, 5, 6, 7 & 8 are struck out.

— O. Ariwoola, JSC. Galadima v. State (2017) – SC.70/2013

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ISSUE: NATURE OF ISSUE & GROUNDS OF APPEAL

It is trite that a Respondent may not formulate issues outside the grounds of appeal contained in the Appellant’s Notice of Appeal, in this case contained in Pages 337 – 346 of the printed records of Appeal. Issues for determination must be based on and correlate with the grounds of appeal and should be an answer to the grounds of appeal. An issue may encompass one or more grounds of appeal, it is incompetent where the issues are not based on the grounds of appeal, they are irrelevant. Issues for determination in an appeal is akin to pleadings in the lower Court, hence adherence to the strict observance of the rules on formulating issues for determination. If all the above constituent elements or requirements of the doctrine are not fully established, the plea of estoppel per rem judicatam can not be sustained.

– Nwaoma Uwa, JCA. NOGA v. NICON (2007)

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PURPOSE OF OMNIBUS GROUND OF APPEAL

An omnibus ground of appeal is therefore designed to allow a complaint on evaluation of evidence and it encompasses complaint of improper evaluation of evidence. It implies that the judgment of the trial court cannot be supported by the weight of the evidence adduced by the successful party which the trial judge either wrongly accepted or that the inference drawn or conclusion reached by the trial Judge based on the accepted evidence cannot be justified. An omnibus ground of appeal also implies that there is no evidence which if accepted would support the findings of the trial judge.

– Ogwuegbu JSC. Ajibona v. Kolawole (1996)

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EASY WAY TO IDENTIFY A GROUND OF FACT FROM A GROUND OF LAW

In Enterprise Bank Ltd. v. Deaconess F. Bose Aroso & 5 ors. Suit No.166/2003 judgment delivered on the 12th of April, 2013: “Before making the distinction between grounds of law, mixed law and facts, and facts, first of all read carefully the ground of appeal and its particulars to understand thoroughly the substance of the complaint. Find out if the ground of appeal contests facts. If it does it can only be a ground of facts or mixed law and facts. Once facts are not in dispute. That is to say facts are settled, a ground of appeal can never be on facts or mixed law and facts. The ground of appeal can only complain of the wrong application of the law to settled facts and that is a ground of law. It is very easy to identify a ground of appeal on facts.”

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AIM OF GROUND OF APPEAL IS TO OUT THE OPPOSING PARTY IN NOTICE OF COMPLAINT

It is now trite in law that the aim or purpose of a ground of appeal is to give the opposing party notice of the case it has to meet at the appellate Court and the particulars of error or misdirection alleged only intended to showcase the complaint against the decision appealed against. The particulars are not independent of the ground but must be in harmony and compatible with the grounds.

— Tanko Muhammad, JSC. Berger v Toki Rainbow (2019) – SC.332/2009

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