Asare Koranteng V. Opanin Kwame Ayim & Anor (1953)
LawGlobal Hub Judgment Report – West African Court of Appeal
Appeals in Civil Cases—Land Court affirming Native Court—Land Court refusing special leave to appeal further—West African Court of Appeal Ordinance (Cap. 5), sections 3 and 4 (1)—Courts Ordinance (Cap. 4), sections 20A and 20C.
Section 3 of the W.A.C.A. Ordinance relates to appeals from a Divisional Court sitting in its original jurisdiction and is irrelevant here. Section 4 provides that “An appeal shall lie . . . from the decision of a Divisional Court on appeal from … a Native Court . . . subject to the following provisions:—
“(1) Where the Divisional Court has affirmed the Native Court the appeal shall lie only by special leave of the Divisional Court; etc.”
Section 20A of theCourts Ordinance creates the Lands Division of the Supreme Court with its Land Court, to which are applied by sub-section (3) all provisions relating to a Divisional Court in the exercise of its civil jurisdiction; and section 20C enables an appeal from the Land Court exercising its original or any appellate jurisdiction “in like manner and subject to the like conditions as if the appeal were an appeal to the West African Court of Appeal from a Divisional Court.”
The Land Court having affirmed the judgment of the Native Court, the defendant applied to the Land Court for special leave to appeal to W.A.C.A., and on being refused applied to W.A.C.A. itself for special leave to appeal.
The right to appeal is statutory: in this case it is governed by section 4 of the West African Court of Appeal Ordinance, and no right is conferred to apply to the Court of Appeal when the Land Court refuses the special leave required under paragraph (1) of section 4.