The Supreme Court says virtual court sittings are not unconstitutional.
A seven-man panel of the Apex Court led by Justice Olabode Rhodes-Vivour gave the ruling in Abuja at the hearing of separate suits filed by the Attorneys-General of Lagos and Ekiti on the adoption of remote hearings by judges in their states.
Members of the panel dismissed the fear said to be entertained by many judges as to the constitutionality of remote hearings in the country.
The seven-man panel maintained that Chief Judges of states that had issued practice direction to provide for virtual sitting when convenient had the duty to enforce the directive.
The panel described the suits of both the Lagos and Ekiti States’ AGs as speculative, stressing that the suits did not disclose how virtual proceedings had injured the interest or right of anyone.
Both the Lagos State AG, Moyosore Onigbanjo (SAN), and that of Ekiti State, Olawale Fapohunda, then withdrew the suits after members of the apex court panel described the suits as academic and speculative.
While Lagos State filed its suit challenging the power of the National Assembly to amend section 274 of the Constitution which includes virtual proceedings in the Constitution, Ekiti State had urged the court to make an affirmative decision on the issue to remove the speculations and uncertainties being entertained by judges.