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LOCAL COUNCIL COURTS ACT, 2006.

ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS.

   Section

PART I
PRELIMINARY.

   1.   Short title.

   2.   Interpretation.

PART II
ESTABLISHMENT AND COMPOSITION OF LOCAL COUNCIL COURTS.

   3.   Establishment of local council courts.

   4.   Composition of local council courts.

   5.   Qualification of members of a local council court.

   6.   Chairperson and Secretary to the town, division and sub-county local council court.

   7.   Vacation of office by a member of town, division and sub-county local council court.

PART III
OPERATION OF LOCAL COUNCIL COURTS.

   8.   Sitting area of court etc.

   9.   Territorial jurisdiction of local council courts.

   10.   Legal jurisdiction.

   11.   Where to institute suits.

   12.   Objection to jurisdiction by defendant.

   13.   Powers of court.

PART IV
INSTITUTION OF CIVIL PROCEEDINGS.

   14.   Institution of civil proceedings.

   15.   Notice of claim to be served on parties.

   16.   Representation by nominee.

   17.   Appearance by a corporation.

PART V
INSTITUTION OF PROCEEDINGS IN RESPECT OF BREACH OF BYELAW.

   18.   Institution of proceedings for breach of byelaws.

   19.   Charge sheet.

PART VI
SUMMONS OF WITNESSES.

   20.   Witness summons.

PART VII
RECORDS OF PROCEEDINGS.

   21.   Language of court.

   22.   Records of proceedings.

PART VIII
RULES OF PROCEDURE AND PRINCIPLES OF NATURAL JUSTICE.

   23.   Technical rules of evidence or procedure.

   24.   Principles of natural justice.

PART IX
REMEDIES.

   25.   Compensation.

   26.   Restitution.

   27.   Attachment and sale, warrant etc.

   28.   Restrictions on attachment and sales.

   29.   Applications of proceeds of sale.

   30.   Where the debtor has no property.

   31.   Stay of execution.

PART X
APPEALS.

   32.   Right of appeal.

   33.   Lodging of appeal.

   34.   Witnesses in appellate court.

   35.   Powers of appellate court.

PART XI
MISCELLANEOUS.

   36.   Court to be open.

   37.   Parties to be informed of their right of appeal.

   38.   Prohibition of a case determined in former case (Res judicata).

   39.   Local council court not to deal with cases where suit or matter is already pending before another court.

   40.   Chief Magistrate's supervisory powers.

   41.   Fees and remuneration of members of court.

   42.   Utilisation of fees and fines.

   43.   Protection of members and officers of court.

   44.   Suit where case pending before another court.

   45.   Regulations.

   46.   Amendment of Schedules.

   47.   Consequential amendment of Magistrates' Courts Act.

   48.   Adaptations.

   49.   Consequential amendment of Children Act.

   50.   Repeal and saving.

      First Schedule   Currency point.

      Second Schedule   Cases and matters of a civil nature which may be triable by local council courts.

      Third Schedule   Civil disputes governed by customary law, triable by local council courts.

      Fourth Schedule   Forms.

 

LOCAL COUNCIL COURTS ACT, 2006.

Commencement: 8 June, 2006.

   An Act to establish local council courts for the administration of justice at the local level, to define the jurisdiction, powers and procedure of the established courts and to provide for other related matters.

 

PART I
PRELIMINARY.

 

1.   Short title.

   This Act may be cited as the Local Council Courts Act, 2006.

 

2.   Interpretation.

   In this Act unless the context otherwise requires—

   "advocate" has the meaning given to it by the Advocates Act;

   "appellate court" means a court to which an appeal is made under this Act;

   "Chairperson" means a Chairperson of a local council court and a Vice Chairperson shall be construed accordingly;

   "Chief Magistrate" has the meaning given to it by the Magistrates' Courts Act;

   "council" includes all councils referred to in sections 3 and 45 of the Local Governments Act;

   "currency point" has the meaning given to it in the First Schedule to this Act;

   "customary law" means the rules of conduct established by custom and long usage having the force of law and not forming part of the common law nor formally enacted in any legislation;

   "local council court" means the local council court established under section 3;

   "Minister" means the Minister responsible for local government;

   "sign and "counter-sign" include affixing a thumb print or mark; and

   "village", "parish", "town", "division" and "sub-county" have the meanings given to them in the Local Governments Act.

 

PART II
ESTABLISHMENT AND COMPOSITION OF LOCAL COUNCIL COURTS.

 

3.   Establishment of local council courts.

   There is established a local council court at every village, parish, town, division and sub-county level.

 

4.   Composition of local council courts.

   (1) The local council court of a village or parish shall consist of all members of the executive committee of the village or parish.

   (2) The local council court of a town, division or sub-county shall consist of five members appointed by the town council, division council or sub-county council on the recommendation of the respective executive committee.

   (3) At least two members of the town, division or sub-county local council court shall be women.

 

5.   Qualification of members of a local council court.

   For any person to be appointed a member of a town, division, or sub-county local council court, that person shall—

   (a)   be a resident of the area of jurisdiction of the council for which the court is appointed;

   (b)   be a person of high moral character and proven integrity;

   (c)   be knowledgeable in the common local language of the community in question and in English;

   (d)   not be a member of a local council, a member of Parliament or a member of a statutory body;

   (e)   not be a member of another local council court.

 

6.   Chairperson and Secretary to the town, division and sub-county local council court.

   (1) A town, division, sub-county, local council court shall elect a Chairperson and a Vice Chairperson from among themselves.

   (2) The Vice Chairperson shall be a woman if the Chairperson is a man and vice versa if the Chairperson is a woman.

   (3) Whenever the Chairperson is for any reason, unable to perform the functions of the Chairperson, the Vice Chairperson shall perform those functions until the Chairperson is able to perform those functions.

   (4) If the Chairperson dies, resigns or is removed from office under this Act, the Vice Chairperson shall assume the office of the Chairperson until a new Chairperson is elected by the council and the new Chairperson assumes office.

   (5) The Secretary to the local council court at the town council, division council or subcounty council shall be the town clerk or subscounty chief or an officer designated to be Secretary by the town clerk or subcounty chief.

   (6) The Secretary shall not take part in the decision making of the court.

 

7.   Vacation of office by a member of town, division or sub-county local council court.

   (1) A member of a town, division or sub-county local council court may on the recommendation of the relevant executive committee be removed from office by a resolution of the council supported by not less than two-thirds of the council members present on any of the following grounds—

   (a)   abuse of office;

   (b)   corruption;

   (c)   if the member is continuously and persistently unable to discharge the functions of the court;

   (d)   if the member is convicted by a court of competent jurisdiction for a criminal offence specified in the Penal Code or any other written law if punishable by not less than six months imprisonment with or without an option of a fine;

   (e)   misconduct or misbehaviour;

   (f)   if a member has such physical or mental incapacity that renders the member incapable of performing the functions of the court as determined by the Medical Board as specified in section 14 of the Local Governments Act.

   (2) The office of member of the town, division or sub-county local council court shall fall, vacant if—

   (a)   the member resigns office by writing signed by him or her addressed to the Chairperson of the court and in the case of the Chairperson of the court addressed to the Chairperson of the respective council;

   (b)   the member is disqualified from membership under section 5;

   (c)   a member dies;

   (d)   if a member has been absent for three consecutive court sittings unless such a member has grounds acceptable to the court.

   (3) Where a vacancy occurs the Chairperson of the court, or if the vacancy is in the office of Chairperson, the Chairperson of the respective council, shall notify the executive committee of the council and the executive committee shall recommend another person in place of that member to be appointed by the council.

   (4) Members of a local council court shall hold office for the term of the council and shall be eligible for re-appointment.

   (5) Section 47 of the Local Governments Act, shall apply to the vacation of office of a member of the village or parish local council court.

 

PART III
OPERATION OF LOCAL COUNCIL COURTS.

 

8.   Sitting area of court etc.

   (1) A local council court may be held at a designated place within the limits of its jurisdiction for the convenient and speedy discharge of its business.

   (2) The Chairperson of the court shall preside at the sittings of the court and in the absence of the Chairperson, the Vice Chairperson shall preside.

   (3) A local council court shall sit as often as the business of the court requires for the speedy discharge of cases.

   (4) The quorum of the court at any sitting shall be—

   (a)   in the case of a village or parish, five members including the person presiding, two of whom shall be women; and

   (b)   in the case of a town, division or sub-county, three members including the person presiding, one of whom shall be a woman.

   (5) The quorum shall be maintained throughout the court sitting.

   (6) If the quorum is lost for any reason, the court shall adjourn to another time.

   (7) Every question arising before a local council court shall be determined by consensus; and in the absence of a consensus shall be determined by a majority of votes of the members sitting by show of hands.

   (8) Where the votes are equal, the Chairperson shall have a casting vote.

   (9) Subject to the provisions of this section the judgment of the court shall be made by the Chairperson and the members of the court who were present throug

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