The President of Court of Appeal, Justice Zainab Adamu Bulkachuwa, on Thursday said the court received 805 election petitions on the general elections.
Bulkachuwa made the fact known when she addressed the 2019 Annual Justices Conference in Abuja on Thursday.
She said many of the justices did not enjoy their annual vacation due to the general elections which culminated in the various elections petitions tribunals and the appeals.
“We received 805 petitions from across the country, this can be attributed to the confidence which the citizens have in the judiciary as the hope for the common man.
“No doubt this electioneering year was a hectic one, because after the annual sittings, 805 appeals were filed across the 16 divisions and the court was up to the task. I say well done for our collective efforts in making Nigerian democracy stronger in spite of all odds,“ she said.
She said that, while the election petition tribunal were sitting, the justices were on the move on different panels with a view of bringing down the volume of cases in different divisions.
Bulkachuwa said effort further helped in de-congesting the court backlogs of appeals. “For the year ending, the court has disposed of 4,007 judgments and 7,911 motions.
“We will be commissioning the Ilorin and Yola divisions of the Court of Appeal while renovation work on Benin and Kaduna divisions are ongoing .
“We intend to create four new divisions of the court with a view to reducing the workload on the justices and also bring justice closer to the people,“ she said.
Bulkachuwa said the court established a Social Media Centre before the commencement of the tribunals sittings.
She said the social media hub was an interactive platform meant to give on the spot report of the happenings in the various tribunals.
She said that the mainstream media supported the Appeal Court especially during the formal inauguration of the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal.
”Thank you for being there for the court and I wish to seize this opportunity to further appeal to you not to relent in giving us positive coverage. As I have always said, our doors are open if you need to seek further clarification where in doubt,” she said.
In his remarks, the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Tanko Mohammed, said for judges to work as a panel, there must be peace, co- operation and intelligence.
He said that the justices were carefully drawn and there should not be a show of egotism but understanding among them. Mohammed said all should strive to achieve the purpose of their being there.
The theme of this year’s conference was ” Professionalizing the Administration of Justice “