Court moves to deal with two months' lockdown backlog

By Matai'a Lanuola Tusani T - Ah Tong 20 May 2020, 1:00PM

A backlog of cases, stretching close to two months as a result of the coronavirus pandemic lockdown, are being rescheduled as the Court moves to address the delays.

Court proceedings are back to normal this week since the start of S.O.Es for coronavirus in March.

Notices posted up at the Court remind people to keep the social distance of two meters from each other. 

Since the S.O.Es, Court matters being called were restricted to bail hearings and mention in the Supreme and District Court while substantive hearings did not proceed. 

Down at the Lands and Titles Court, there have been no matters being heard since the SOEs in March and the beginning of this week. 

It was not possible to get a comment from the Ministry of Justice and Courts Administration Chief Executive Officer, Moliei Simi Vaai. 

A Court official who was not authorised to speak to the media estimated the number of Court proceedings that were postponed due to the restrictions to more than a hundred. 

Those proceedings include hearings, decisions and sentencing. 

In the District Court this week, Judge Talasa Atoa Saaga during a bail hearing said the Court will re-mention all matters that were scheduled in the past eight weeks. 

The Ministry of Justice had issued a statement in March that all Court proceedings will be postponed to comply with the SOES to prevent the spread of coronavirus. 

At the time, the probation and parole services as well as the Maintenance section were also suspended. 

By Matai'a Lanuola Tusani T - Ah Tong 20 May 2020, 1:00PM

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