Measurements of Speedy Trial

Saheed Afeez Ayinde


The administration of justice is in no doubt one of which is a delicate treasure which must be protected from any forms of deficiencies.

The duty of which is upon the court to protect and at the same time, be served to the needy parties without delay. Hence the speedy Trial is of utmost duty of the court in serving Justice. Same way the court would observe the measurements of the right of fair hearing, it’ll also not neglect Her duty to Speedy Trial.

The court had however differentiate between the Former from the Latter in ascertaining Her more Holiness.

Hence, The appellant’s invocation or exercise of their right of appeal triggered off two other rights their right to the fair hearing of their appeal and the right that the appeal would be heard within a reasonable time both of which are guaranteed by Section 36(1) of the Constitution.

The fomer, that is the right to fair hearing. being a private right of sole benefit to the litigant can be waived by the litigant himself: ARIORI v. ELEMO (1983) LPELR 552 (SC). The right to speedy trial is rather complex, as it does not lie within the powers of the appellants to compromise. The Full Panel in ARIORI v. ELEMO (supra) had held that the right to speedy trial is a fundamental right existing for the benefit of both the litigants and the public. Apart from the right to ask for reasonable adjoumments, the litigant does not enjoy the right to unduly delay proceedings and comprise the public right to speedy trial or determination of any cause before the Court

Per Eso, JSC aptly stated

A speedy trial is valuable and it will be zealously guarded by the Courts with resolute courage so that in the protection of personal rights the administration of justice is not defeated. The Courts, as stated in the English case: VINOS v. MARKS & SPENCER (2001) 3 ALL ER. 784, have no residual powers to excuse the dilatory litigant

Expositions Legal

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