How is the appellate jurisdiction different from the original jurisdiction?
In its appellate jurisdiction, the CCJ hears and determines appeals in both civil and criminal matters from common law courts within the jurisdictions of Member States of the Community and which are parties to the Agreement Establishing the CCJ.
In its appellate jurisdiction, the CCJ is the highest municipal court in the region for states which accede to its appellate jurisdiction. In its original jurisdiction, the CCJ discharges the functions of an international tribunal, applying rules of international law in respect of the interpretation and application of the Treaty of Chaguaramas. In this regard, the CCJ functions like the European Court of Justice, the European Court of First Instance, the Andean Court of Justice of COMESA and the International Court of Justice. In short, the CCJ is a hybrid institution – a municipal court of last resort and an international court with compulsory and exclusive jurisdiction in respect of the interpretation and application of the Treaty of Chaguaramas.
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