Under the Treaty establishing the Common Market for Eastern and southern Africa
The following shall be Users of the COMESA Court of Justice
- Member States:
These include:BurundiComorosDR CongoDjiboutiEgyptEthiopiaEritreaKenyaLibyaMalawi,MadagascarMauritiusRwanda,Seychelles
- The Secretary General of COMESA
Appointed under Article 17 of the Treaty which provides that the Secretariat shall be headed by a Secretary General of the Common Market who shall be appointed by the Authority to serve in such office for a term of 5 years and shall be eligible for re-appointment for a further term of 5 years.
- Legal and Natural persons which are resident in a Member State
Article 26 of the Treaty provides that any person who is resident in a Member State may refer for determination by the Court the legality of any act, regulation, directive or decisions of the Council or of a Member State on the grounds that such act, directive, decision or regulation is unlawful or infringes any of the provisions of the Treaty.Provided that where the matter for determination relates to any act, regulation, directive or decision by a Member State, such person shall not refer the matter for determination under this Article unless he has first exhausted local remedies in national courts or tribunals of the Member State.
- COMESA Employees
Article 27 of the Treaty provides that the Court shall have jurisdiction to hear disputes between the Common Market and its employees that arise out of the application and interpretation of the Staff Rules and Regulations of the Secretariat or the terms and conditions of employment of the employees of the Common Market.
- Claimants and Respondents in Arbitral Proceedings before the Court
This is provided for in Article 28 of the Treaty where there is an Arbitration Clause contained in a contract to which the Common Market or any of its Institutions is a party or where there is a dispute between the Member States regarding the Treaty and such disputes are submitted to the Court under a special agreement between the Member States. For instance a contract between two Member States may have the following Arbitration Clause:-“All disputes arising in connection with the present contract shall be finally settled by the COMESA Court of Justice pursuant to Article 28 of the Treaty establishing the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa”.
- The Authority
Under Article 32 of the Treaty the Authority, the Council or a Member State may request the Court to give an advisory opinion regarding questions of law arising from the provisions of the Treaty affecting the Common Market and in such a case the Authority shall have a right to be represented and take part in the proceedings.
Under Article 36 of the Treaty a Member State, the Secretary General or a resident of a Member State who is not a party to a case before the Court may with leave of the Court, intervene in that case, but the submissions of the intervening party shall be limited to evidence supporting or opposing the arguments of a party to the case.
- National Courts may request for Preliminary Rulings of the COMESA Court of Justice
Under Article 30 of the Treaty where a question is raised before any court or tribunal of a Member State concerning the application or interpretation of the Treaty or the validity of the regulations, directive and decisions of the Common Market, such court or tribunal shall, if it considers that a ruling on the question is necessary to enable it to give judgement, request the Court to give a preliminary ruling thereon.
- Third Parties
Third Parties may refer to the Court for determination claims against the Common Market or it institutions for acts of their servants or employees in the performance of their duties.
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