Article 20 of the Treaty provides that the Court shall be composed of twelve Judges who shall be appointed by the Authority and seven of whom shall be appointed to the first instance Division and five to the Appellate Division. The Authority designated one of the Appellate Judges as the President of the Court responsible for exercising such functions as are set out under the COMESA Treaty and the Rules of the Court. The Authority also designated one Judge of the First Instance Division as the Principal Judge with such functions as are set out in the Rules of Court.
The Judges of the Court shall be chosen from among persons of impartiality and independence who fulfil the conditions required for the holding of high judicial office in their respective countries of domicile or who are jurists of recognized competence.
Provided that no two or more Judges shall at any time be nationals of the same Member State.
Tenure of office and resignation
The President and Judges shall hold office for a period of five years and shall be eligible for re-appointment for a further period of five years.
The President and the Judges shall hold office throughout the term of their respective
appointments unless they resign or die or are removed from office in accordance with the provisions of this Treaty.
Where the term of office of a Judge comes to an end by effluxion of time or on resignation before a decision or opinion of the Court with respect to a matter which has been argued before the Court of which he was a member is delivered, such Judge shall, only for the purpose of completing that particular matter, continue to sit as a Judge.
The President may, at any time, resign his office by giving one year’s written notice to the Chairman of the Authority, but his resignation shall not take effect until his successor has been appointed by the Authority and has taken office.
A Judge may, at any time, resign his office by letter delivered to the President for transmission to the Chairman of the Authority, and his resignation shall take effect on the date it has been accepted by the Authority.
The Authority may upon the request of the Court appoint additional Judges.