The Nauru Supreme Court resumes proceedings
The first formal sitting of the
Supreme Court of Nauru comprising its newly appointed members got
underway this morning (12 Sept) prior to the call over of
This is a historic event for Nauru as the Supreme Court of Nauru
is now comprised of a bench of three judges which features a lady,
Justice Elizabeth Hamilton-White, among its members for the first
time, noting also the first lady resident magistrate, Ms Emma Garo.
The third member of the bench is Justice Mohammed Shafiullah Khan
who was not present for personal reasons.
An introduction of the day's proceedings was announced by Acting
Registrar Graham Leung followed by the opening statement of the
Chief Justice and statements by Secretary for Justice and Border
Control Lionel Aingimea, President of the Nauru Law Society Vinci
Clodumar and Director of Public Prosecutions Wilisoni
In his opening statement CJ Madraiwiwi said "the courts' first
priority is the resumption of proceedings after a hiatus of six
months," and the disposing of the "backlog of cases that have
"In relation to constitutional cases and complex legal matters,
the court has decided it will constitute a bench of two or three
judges dependent on availability to determine them. In this manner,
issues can be given the consideration and reflection of three legal
minds and assist further in the development of the legal
jurisprudence of Nauru," CJ Madraiwiwi said.
His Lordship is "hopeful Nauruans will join the bench in future to
serve their own people and provide the national perspective that is
The CJ also stated that another tier above the Supreme Court - a
Court of Appeal, may be considered in the future. However
presently, the need of additional court rooms is an urgent matter
and the court is already considering realistic solutions of
temporary structures or use of schools during the holidays.
Secretary for Justice Lionel Aingimea, President of the Nauru Law
Society Vinci Clodumar and Director of Public Prosecutions Wilisoni
Kurisaqila each expressed their congratulations to CJ Madraiwiwi,
Justice Hamilton-White and Justice Khan and conveyed similar
sentiments of the monumental task ahead that is to expedite the
back log of cases, support for additional court rooms and the need
for additional qualified legal personnel.
A Pleaders' course is under review and will be mandatory for court
clerks to enrol in.
The call over of cases commenced shortly after the delivery of