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TO SATISFY NATIONAL INDUSTRIAL COURT BEFORE ADOPTION OF HIGH COURT PROCEDURE

Dictum

It is my considered opinion that for Order 23 of the National Industrial Court [Civil Procedure] Rules, 2017 to apply, Counsel must satisfy the Court as to the following: a. That there is no provision made in the Rules as to the practice and procedure sought to be adopted. b. That there is a provision made but it is in adequate. c. That the procedure sought to be adopted will do substantial justice to the parties in the particular circumstance. In my view, learned Counsel has not satisfied these conditions. In addition, what learned Counsel sought to do is unknown to law.

— I.G. Nweneka, J. Anyina v. Messrs First City Monument Bank Ltd. (NICN/ABK/03/2017, 12th December 2017)

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DISTINCTION BETWEEN SUBSTANTIVE & PROCEDURAL LAW

“24, Mr, Onuora rightly set out the distinction between substantive and procedural laws when he said that ‘as a general rule, laws which fix duties, establish rights and responsibilities among and for persons natural or otherwise are substantive laws in character while those which merely prescribe the manner in which such rights and responsibilities may be exercised and enforced in a Court are procedural law.’”

— Ukor v Laleye (2005) – ECW/CCJ/APP/01/04

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WRONG PROCEDURE ROBS THE COURT OF JURISDICTION

In essence therefore, initiating an action on a wrong procedure robs the court of its jurisdiction to adjudicate over such matter. The issue of jurisdiction of a court to adjudicate over a matter before it is a threshold issue that goes to the root or foundation of adjudication. This stems from the trite position of...

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WHERE A STATUTE HAS PROVIDED A PROCEDURE SUCH PROCEDURE MUST BE FOLLOWED

In Adejobi v. State (2011) 6 MJSC (Pt 1) 101 @ 119 it was held that: “It is trite that a question of law and jurisdiction can be raised at any time in the proceedings, but it is not a free for all procedure. Where a statute under which an issue or matter is to be raised has provided a procedure for raising such issues or matter, that procedure, and no other must be followed.”

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PROCEDURE FOR FILING A CLAIM MUST BE FOLLOWED

Where such statutory or constitutional provision is made for the filing of a claim, the procedure so laid down ought to be followed in making the claim and no other one. See Gbadamosi Lahan v. Attorney-General of Western Nigeria (1963) 2 SCNLR 47; (1963) 1 All NLR 226. — Iguh JSC. Onuoha v State (1998)...

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BREACH OF PRACTICE & PROCEDURE DOES NOT RENDER NULLITY

Samuel Osigwe v. PSPLS Management Consortium Ltd & Ors. (2009) 3 NWLR 378 SC: “Breach of a rule of practice and procedure does not render the proceedings a nullity but merely an irregularity.” Was this dictum helpful? Yes 0 No 0...

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APPROPRIATE TIME TO RAISE AN OBJECTION AS TO PROCEDURAL IRREGULARITY

It has since been established by a plethora of authorities that the appropriate time at which a party to proceedings should raise an objection based on procedural irregularity is at the commencement of the proceedings or at the time when the irregularity arises. If the party sleeps on that right and allows the proceedings to...

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