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COMPLAIN FOR MISAPPLICATION OF THE LAW IS A GROUND OF LAW

Dictum

Where the complaint in the ground of appeal is one of misunderstanding by the court of the law or misapplication of the law to the facts already established, it is a ground of Law. Where the ground of appeal disputes or questions the evaluation of facts by the court before applying the law, it is a ground of mixed law and fact.

– Rhodes-Vivour JSC. Nwaolisah v. Nwabufoh (2011)

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ESSENCE OF PARTICULARS OF GROUND OF APPEAL

The essence of particulars to a ground of appeal is to explain or substantiate on the ground or grounds. Where the particulars are incorporated and embedded in the ground of appeal, as in this case, it does not make ground 2 incompetent. This method I would term as a “short cut” in drafting and formulating grounds of appeal by the learned counsel to the Appellant.

– Uwa, JCA. GTB v. Innoson (2014) – CA/I/258/2011

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RESPONDENT CANNOT RAISE ISSUES OUTSIDE THE GROUNDS OF APPEAL

It is settled law that issues for determination must relate to and arise from the grounds of appeal filed by the appellant and any issue that is not distilled from the grounds of appeal is incompetent and must be struck out. A respondent must formulate his issues from the grounds of appeal and he has no business to raise any issue outside them when he did not file a cross appeal or a respondent’s notice that the judgment of the court should be affirmed on other grounds. See:- “ Carlen (Nig.) Ltd. v. University of Jos and Anor (1994) 1 SCNJ 72 Agwundu and Ors v. Onwumere (1994) 1 SCNJ 106 Godwin v. C.A.C. (1998) 14 NWLR (Pt. 584) 162 Shitta Bey v. Attorney-General of the Federation (1998) 10 NWLR (Pt. 570) 392.

— Opene JCA. United Bank for Africa (UBA) v. Samuel Igelle Ujor (CA/C/134/99, 20 FEB 2001)

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COUNSEL SHOULD INDICATE WHAT GROUND AN ISSUE WAS RAISED FROM

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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ONLY ONE ISSUE CAN ARISE FROM A GROUND OF APPEAL

It should, however, be noted that, Appellant had distilled their Issue one from grounds 1, 2 and 5 of the Grounds of the Appeal, and thereafter, distilled the Issue 3 (which the Respondent attacked, mistaking it for Issue 4) from the same ground one of the appeal. Appellants cannot do that, as it would amount to proliferation of issues. Having earlier used the ground one, together with grounds 2 and 5, to distill the issue one, the said ground one was no longer available to donate another issue for the determination of the appeal. We have held repeatedly, that a ground of appeal cannot be split to generate issues for determination, and that, once an issue has been distilled from a given ground of appeal, the said ground of appeal is no longer available to give birth to another issue for determination, either alone or in conjunction with other grounds of appeal. Where a ground of appeal has been used to formulate an issue for determination, using it again to formulate another issue will corrupt that other issue for determination and render it incompetent.

– Mbaba JCA. Aduba v. Aduba (2018)

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CANNOT FRAME MORE ISSUES THAN THE NUMBER OF GROUNDS

The law is well settled that in practice, there should be no proliferation of issues. Therefore out of three grounds of appeal, an appellant cannot formulate or frame four issues. In other words, a party cannot frame more issues than the number of grounds of appeal.

– Adumein JCA. Adewoyin v. Executive Governor (2011)

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