Meaning of writ of summons

Writ of Summons under Undefended List – When Issued

Obaro v. Hassan [2013] 8 NWLR (Pt. 1357) 425 at 449, paras. D-F, per Ariwoola, JSC:


“…the issuance of a writ of summons…under undefended list procedure cannot precede the order of court so to do. In other words, contrary to the misconception of the appellant, even though the writ of summons is issued by the Registrar, he cannot issue one before the court so orders. It is a judicial function that cannot be delegated to an officer… Such a writ of summons that was issued before judicial decision so to do, upon consideration of an application becomes incompetent and will ordinarily rob the trial court of its competence to try the matter. It is like a notice of appeal, which requires leave before being filed, to be filed without leave of court, it shall be incompetent and be so declared by the court as a nullity… Writ of summons therefore being an originating process must be initiated properly to enable the court assume jurisdiction over the matter.”

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