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ECOWAS Court promises conducive environment for improved efficiency

The President of ECOWAS Court of Justice, Hon. Justice Edward Amoako Asante, has expressed the desire of the management of…

The President of ECOWAS Court of Justice, Hon. Justice Edward Amoako Asante, has expressed the desire of the management of the Court to create a conducive working environment needed for improved productivity.In a speech at the opening of the second phase of the workshop for the validation of the subject matter index of the court for the period 2014 and 2020, Justice Asante explained that this was in recognition of the correlation between an improved work environment and performance.

The President of the ECOWAS Court, whose speech was read by Vice President Gberi- Be Quattara, said that the validation of the index of the Court would be beneficial as reference material for staff, researchers, legal practitioners and other stakeholders in understanding its rich jurisprudence.

He said that the belated exercise, which started with the first phase held earlier in the month, will ‘enable the Court address the lacuna created by the absence of such documentation which had denied the Court and other stakeholders of the full benefit of its jurisprudence.’

During the weeklong workshop, participants will make presentation on draft subject matter index of the Court for the period 2014 to 2020.

According to the President, the index ‘reflects the diverse subject matters and issues determined and pronounced upon by the Court since its establishment as exemplified by its judgments which stood 272 while 125 rulings were delivered as at 21st May 2021 and arranged in alphabetical order for ease of reference and retrieval.’

He noted that coming not long after the adoption of the template for the judgments of the Court, the workshop which is being held at Masaka, near Abuja, provides a further evidence of the determination of the present college of the judges of the Court to ‘improve on the important pillars necessary for the improved functioning of the Court.’

Justice Asante explained that the workshop has been structured to maximize interactivity in order to ensure a qualitative outcome consistent with the international best practices and which reflects the Court’s international status, adding that in order to ensure compliance with the Covid-19 Protocol and because of the quantum of work required, participants have been grouped into two batches.

“In order to capacitate the participants for qualitative contributions,” he explained that the participants have been ‘provided four strategic documents including the draft subject matter index, the list of judgments and the general list of assignments of judgments.’

He urged the staff to see their involvement in the compilation of the index, which will be uploaded on the Court’s web site, as a privilege not only to contribute to this important documentation but to benefit from the Court’s rich and enviable jurisprudence.

The participants at the workshop, who are mostly legal staff of the Court, are expected to check the accuracy of the draft and its fidelity with the judgments of the Court; confirm that the index truly reflects its decisions; establish that it is comprehensive and reflects the important legal principles enunciated by the Court; confirm its validity and suggest changes to fill identified gaps or omissions to ensure qualitative improvement.

The workshop has eight sessions to be chaired by a judge of the Court with participants drawn mainly from legal staff of the Court, who are expected to enrich the exercise by providing objective evaluation of the documents including checking the accuracy of the draft index, content alignment with its decisions, ensuring it is comprehensive, confirming its validity and ultimately ensuring a qualitative improvement.

He commended the commitment of staff, who prepared the draft index and the Chief Registrar of the Court for his qualitative improvement to the working document.

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