The Judicial Services Commission (JSC) has published a detailed guideline on how courts and judicial services will operate during the 30 day lockdown period that commenced today. According to the government, courts will remain open. However, the way they operate will be slightly different from they normal operate. For example people entering the courts will be subjected to temperature checks and are supposed to wear masks at all times.

The JSC has also suspended new case fillings during the lock-down period. This means that courts will only continue to hear petitions that are before them already. New petitions will only be filled on 3 February that is if the lock-down period is not extended. This might have real ramifications as there are often disputes that can arise during this period including disputes that involve people challenging the way the lockdown is being implemented or the legality of some of the provisions made in the lock-down Statutory Instrument. For example banned informal businesses cannot challenge their ban until after the lockdown itself!

Below is the full text of the guidelines provided. The JSC has also issued new remand dates for criminal cases. These dates are in essence an extension of all pending cases.

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