Chief Justice allows courts to hear urgent cases following the lifting of lockdown

The Chief Justice has reiterated initial measures put in place to curtail measures put in place to curb the spread of the novel of the coronavirus following the lifting of the partial lockdown on Accra, Kasoa, Kumasi and Tema.

Justice Anin Yeboah had initially directed all legal cases in Accra and Kumasi to be adjourned to May and June 2020 following the restriction of movement of persons resident in those areas.

Although the President exempted members of the Judiciary from partial lockdown, Justice Anin Yeboah said lawyers, litigants and other court users should just stay at home.

The only courts working were those designated to deal with critical cases such as “breaches arising from the restriction orders and other criminal matters.”

But he has now referred back to an initial statement issued on March 16 which, among others, stated that “only parties and witnesses in cases listed to be heard on particular dates and fixed times, would be allowed into the courtroom to avoid large gatherings.”

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Cases are also to be adjourned to specific times to control numbers, according to the statement.

“Judges and magistrates should hear cases which are of extreme urgency and as far as possible exercises great restraint in remanding accused persons in order to avoid overcrowding in the prisons and police cells,” the statement added.

Ghana’s Coronavirus case count currently stands at 1,042.

Though the President lifted the partial lockdown on Accra, Kasoa, Kumasi and Tema, the new public gathering advisories, which included a ban on gatherings remains in place.