COURT WATCH 4/2014
[25th February 2014]
2014 Court Calendars for Supreme Court, High Court and Labour Court
Practice Directions by Chief Justice
Court Calendars for 2014
This paragraph summarises the General Notices that gazetted the detailed 2014 court calendars for the Supreme Court and High Court [GN 609/2013] and Labour Court [GN 608/2013] [both GNs available from addresses at end of bulletin].
Court terms for all these courts are as follows:
First term: Monday 13th January to Friday 4th April
Second term: Monday 5th May to Friday 1st August
Third term: Monday 1st September to Friday 28th November.
The First Term of 2015 will start on Monday 12th January 2015.
The three court vacations – Easter Vacation, Mid-year Vacation and Christmas Vacation – come between terms. The Christmas vacation starting on Saturday 29th November will end on Sunday 11th January 2015.
Constitutional Court Sittings
On Wednesdays during court term the Supreme Court judges sit as the Constitutional Court to hear constitutional cases.
Supreme Court Sittings in Bulawayo
The Supreme Court also sits in Bulawayo from time to time. The dates of these sittings have not been listed in the gazetted court calendar.
High Court Circuits 2014
Each term there will be one circuit in each of the four circuit centres. The starting dates, all Mondays, are as follows:
Gweru 27th January 19th May 15th September
Masvingo 10th February 2nd June 29th October
Mutare 24th February 16th June 30th October
Hwange 10th March 30th June 3rd November
Labour Court Circuits 2014
Each term there will be one circuit in each of the three circuit centres, as follows:
Mutare 27th January to 7th February
Hwange 17th February to 28th February
Masvingo 10th March to 21st March
Mutare 12th May to 23rd May
Hwange 2nd June to 13th June
Masvingo 7th July to 18th July
Mutare 15th September to 26th September
Hwange 13th October to 24th October
Masvingo 10th November to 21st November.
Practice Directions by Chief Justice
Practice Direction 2/2013: Bringing matters to Constitutional Court
Effective date: 19th June 2013
This Practice Direction gives directions applicable to matters for the Constitutional Court, in the absence of formally enacted rules of court for that court:
- applications in terms of section 85(1) of the Constitution
- urgent applications – the Registrar must place every urgent application before the Chief Justice, who “may give directions for the matter to be dealt with at such time and in such manner as he deems fit”
- appeals from other courts on constitutional issues – must be dealt with in accordance with part IV of the Rules of the Supreme Court, provided that no appeal shall be dismissed for non-compliance with the rules without first seeking directions from the Chief Justice.
Practice Direction 3/2013: Use of the terms “struck off the roll”, “postponed sine die” and “removed from the roll”
Effective date: 1st January 2014
This Practice Direction, dated 29th November 2013, is intended to ensure uniform use of the terms concerned by making certain changes to current practice regarding their use.
- “struck off the roll”: If a Court issues an order that a matter is “struck off the roll”, the effect is that such a matter is no longer before the Court. If the striking-off was for failure to abide by rules of court, the erring party will have thirty (30) days within which to rectify the defect, failing which the matter will be deemed to have been abandoned.
- “postponed sine die” and “removed from the roll” These terms have the same meaning – that a matter is adjourned indefinitely without the Court specifying the date when the matter will be heard again. Where this happens, the Court must direct what a party must do and specify a time-frame for doing it. The Practice Direction also spells out the consequences of a party’s failure to comply with the Court’s directions, and what will happen where the Court has not given directions.
Inactive matters Finally, the Practice Direction provides for the disposal of matters that were previously either “postponed sine die” or “struck off the roll” and have been in that state for long periods of time. Heads of Courts are requested to direct Registrars to set those matters down and have them finalised.
[Both practice directions available from addresses at end of bulletin]
Documents Available from Veritas in Soft Copy
[see addresses at end of bulletin]
2014 Court Calendar for Supreme Court and High Court [GN 609/2013]
2014 Court Calendar for Labour Court [GN 608/2013]
Chief Justice’s Practice Direction 2/2013
Chief Justice’s Practice Direction 3/2013
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