The East African Court of Justice (EACJ), the Judicial arm of the East African Community (EAC) established under Article 9 of The Treaty for the establishment of the East African Community (hereinafter referred to as the Treaty) was inaugurated in November 2001with the swearing in of the first batch of Judges and of the Registrar.
The Court has been in existence for ten years now. From a Court of one Chamber, the Court was by amendment of the Treaty in 2006, transformed into a two Chamber Court namely: the First Instance Division and the Appellate Division.
At its inception, the EACJ was composed of six judges. This representation reflected equal representation of two Judges from each of the then three Partner States of the Community- namely Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. In 2006 and 2007, the Treaty was amended and as a result of which the number of Judges was raised to a maximum of fifteen: and the Court was reconstituted into two Divisions: the First Instance Division, and the Appellate Division.
Article 24(2) OF THE Treaty provides that not more than ten judges shall be appointed to the First Instance Division and not more than five shall be appointed to the Appellate Division.
Currently, the Court is comprised of ten judges. Following the accession of Rwanda and Burundi in July 2007, the composition of the Court reflects equal representation of the current membership of the Community, namely two judges from each of the five Partner States- with each Division of the Court having one Judge from each Partner State.
The Summit designates two judges of the Appellate Division as President and Vice-President respectively as well as two Judges of the First Instance Division as Principal Judge and Deputy-Principal Judge. The President, Vice-President and the Principal Judge, Deputy Principal Judge cannot be nationals of the same Partner State.
The Office of the President of the Court is held in rotation.
The Treaty provides for a Registrar of the Court, appointed by the Council of Ministers from citizens of the Partner States qualified to hold high judicial office in their respective national jurisdiction.
The Court’s jurisdiction encompasses the interpretation and application of the Treaty. Additionally, the Court has jurisdiction to render Advisory opinions when requested to do so by the Summit, the Council of Ministers or a Partner State. Likewise, the Court has a mandate to conduct Arbitration proceedings, when specially called upon to do so by the relevant parties to a contract or by special agreement between the Partner States. Furthermore, the Court has jurisdiction to entertain employment disputes between the Community (including its Organs or Institutions) and its Employees. Moreover, under Article 27(2) of the Treaty, the Court has been granted “such other original, appellate, human rights and other jurisdiction as will be determined by the Council of Ministers at a suitable subsequent date”.
Appointment and Tenure of Judges
Judges are appointed by the Summit from among persons recommended by the partner States who are of proven integrity, impartiality and independence and who fulfill the conditions required in their own countries for the holding of high judicial office or who are jurists of recognized competence in their respective Countries. Judges of the Court are appointed for a maximum period of seven years.
However, to ensure continuity in the Court’s composition, the tenure of Judges is staggered: the first batch of Judges had a staggered tenure of five years, six years and seven years. The Treaty Amendments of 2006-2007 continued this principle of staggered terms. A judges tenure is, nonetheless, subject to resignation, death, removal from office in accordance with the Treaty, or upon attaining the age of seventy years.
CHIEF JUSTICE OF THE REPUBLIC OF UGANDA OFFICIATES EACJ PLENARY AND STRATEGIC PLAN MEETING IN ENTEBBE
East African Court of Justice Arusha, 30th May, 2017: The Chief Justice of the Republic of Uganda, Justice Bart Katureebe officially opened the East African Court of Justice (EACJ) mid-year plenary and strategic plan meeting which set off in Entebbe, Uganda. His Lordship represented by the Honourable Justice Eldad D. Mwangusya, judge of the Supreme […]Read Full Article
East African Court of Justice Entebbe, 4 June 2017:ThePresident of the Court, Justice Dr. Emmanuel Ugirashebuja commended all the participants for their efforts to ensure the Court’s Strategic plan is developed. He added that, “We are the drivers of the implementation of this strategic plan, and therefore we need to work as a team to […]Read Full Article
Attorney General and Speaker of the Transitional Assembly of South Sudan revoke the nomination of nine Members to EALA
East African Court of Justice Arusha, June 15, 2017; The First Instance Division heard an inter parties Application file by Wani Santido from the Republic of South Sudan against the Attorney General of the Republic of South Sudan, the Speaker of the Parliament of South Sudan and the Secretary General of the East African Community. […]Read Full Article
Court President pays courtesy to the Chief Justice & Minister of Industry, Trade & EAC Affairs in Rwanda
East African Court of Justice Arusha, 9 June 2017: The President of the East African Court of Justice Hon. Justice Dr. Emmanuel Ugirashebuja paid courtesy call to the Chief Justice, His Lordship Justice Sam Rugege and Minister of Industry, Trade and East African Community Affairs, Hon. François Kanimba of the Republic of Rwanda. The purpose […]Read Full Article
Reference No.2 of 2016 was filed on 3rd June 2016 and is said to have been founded on Articles 6(d) and 7(2) of the Treaty for the Establishment of the East African Community as well as Rule 24 of this Court’s Rules of Procedure. The Applicant is a citizen of the United Republic of Tanzania […]
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COURT DISMISSED A CASE CHALLENGING A TREATY PROVISION ON TIME LIMIT OF 60 DAYS FOR FILING A DISPUTE IN EACJ, AS IT CONCLUDED ITS SESSION
East African Court of Justice Arusha, 31 March 2017: The First Instance Division today as it concluded its sessions, it dismissed a case that was filed by Mr. Steven Deniss from The United Republic of Tanzania against the Attorneys General of the Republics of Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda, United Republic of Tanzania and the Secretary […]Read Full Article
East African Court of Justice Arusha, 14th March 2017: The First Instance Division heard an Application filed by Castro Pius Shirima a Tanzanian resident against the EAC Partner States and the Secretary General. The Applicant is seeking the Court’s order for stay of signing the European Partnership Agreement (EPA). According to the status of the […]Read Full Article
Court hears oral evidence for a Ugandan citizen over his alleged arrest & detention as terrorist suspect
East African Court of Justice Arusha, 6th March 2017: The First Instance Division heard oral evidence by Malcolm Lukwiya in his case he sued the Attorney General of the Republic of Uganda and the Attorney General Republic of Kenya alleging that on 1st July 2015, he was arrested and detained by the Agents of the […]Read Full Article
East African Court of Justice Arusha 17th February 2017: The Registrar of the Mechanism for International Criminal Tribunals (MICT), His Worship Olufemi Elias, accompanied by Mr. Samuel Akorimo, Head of Office MICT Registry Arusha Branch and Mr. Ousman Njikam, External Relations Officer, Arusha Branch paid courtesy call on the Judge President of the EACJ. His […]
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Chief Justice of the Republic of Kenya benchmarks EACJ Case Management system East African Court of Justice Arusha 7th February 20176: The Chief Justice and President of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Kenya visited the Court to study the operation of the case management system (CMRS). His Lordship, Justice David Maraga appreciated the […]
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