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Chief Justice launches book on Civil Procedure and Litigation

By primenewsghana
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Chief Justice Gertrude Sackey Torkornoo has launched a 485 paged book titled “Contemporary and Evolving Issues in Civil Procedure and Ligation” at Law Court Complex in Accra.

The book authored by Justice Alexander Osei Tutu, a High Court Judge, is a compilation of 21 articles and essays traversing intricate legal procedure topics and contemporary issues.

The book written in a humoristic style could be used as a textbook and a novel because it was not written in a legalistic complex language.

Justice Osei Tutu had earlier authored his first book titled “Essential themes in land law and customary law.”

Addressing the gathering which attracted the bar, the bench, clergy and book lovers, the Chief Justice who wrote the foreword, said the book touched on some of the procedural and contemporary issues in civil procedure such as the place of capacity, various technicalities in law and issue of substantial justice and place of expert witness.

“I have no doubt in mind that the topics will go a long way to clarify some of the controversial issues we face in civil procedure. Indeed, some of these areas have become slippery slopes for many judges and practitioners alike and they usually stall cases and rulings,” she said.

She lauded the author for exploring thought provoking and topical issues in the book through research.

According to her, the work of a judge was like the work of an academic, adding, “To my mind the judiciary is part of academia. Our work is made up of researching very difficult questions, testy, and various issues arising out of constantly changing facts. Our work is a very difficult one, it is demanding.”

She noted that Justice Osei Tutu in the Judicial journal had dissected every strand in the development of law through his insightful articles and commentaries.

According to the Chief Justice, the author in each of his writings showed depth of learning, astute craft of the architecture of law and the dynamic mix that every effective judge would have to render effective justice.

“I am speaking about the dexterity in the exercise of judicial skills such as evaluation, reasoning, structured writing and appreciation of social dynamics that every arena of law is designed to respond to.”

Additionally, she said the author’s work had enlightened her because it explored some situations and how they had evolved over the years in respect of law.

“Most of the topics carried out in this book are pertinent issues, confronting the court on daily basis in the application of procedural rules to resolution of substantive rights of litigants and court users.

She said the judiciary was going to consider suggestions to have dedicated rules of land litigation just as it did for commercial litigation.

“I will take that to the rules and ethics Committee of the court.”

She also commended the author for coming out with a well-researched book and encouraged all to share and use the book as a reference in civil procedure.

Justice Osei Tutu recalled how some aspect of the book which touched on the culture of wives adopting their husbands’ surnames had lost its legal relevance had already filled the media space and stirred “a wild controversy.”

“Indeed, is not intended to be just an ordinary textbook, but it act as a nuclear operator to generate fruitful debates for the development of Ghanaian jurisprudence.”

Justice Osei Tutu noted that the challenge of parallel proceedings and representation was drowning all legal systems and the courts were inundated with multiple suits every day.

According to him, countries were finding better ways of resolving the conundrum, but Ghana seem unperturbed and appear to be content with the 19th and 20 centuries legal principles, most of which have become archaic and have been dumped by the British, the very people who formulated them.

He said the book delved into contemporary issues and armed the 21st century lawyer with requisite arsenals to surmount the challenges of the day.

“I believe that the foreword of her Ladyship is enough validation of my work to assure everyone here that the book is a masterpiece,” the High Court Judge said.

Mr Kweku Painstil, the guest of honour, noted that launch was not only to celebrate the author as a good judge, but to celebrate him for his contributions to scholarship, regarding his view of the law on contemporary and evolving issues relating to practice, namely, Civil Procedure.

Mr Paintsil noted that the book dealt with technicalities of the law, namely Common Law principles and their evolution which was still alien to lawyers in the country.

He urged all to invest in the book’s purchase so that the author could prosper in his legitimate industry.