Usman Ghani (December 11, 2013)
H.E. Justice Shamlan Al Sawalehi, Tun Zaki Azmi, former Chief Justice of Malaysia, and the Honourable Roger Giles QC (Australia) would be the members of the Courts’ bench. When it comes to adjudication of commercial disputes, proper guidance and assistance has always been DIFC Courts’ forte, regardless of its jurisdiction. The court has never failed to demonstrate its enviable knack of drawing local as well as international experience together with specialized expertise, while always taking into account the goal of Emiratisation simultaneously. However, appointment of these knowledgeable judges is expected to uphold and further enhance the commercial law expertise at the Court. Moreover, another feather in its cap was when only recently DIFC Courts became the first court in the world to acquire International Standard for Service Excellence (TISSE) certification as a credit to its consistently excellent customer service delivery.
Michael Hwang, Chief Justice of the DIFC Courts, expressed his opinion about the appointments: “All three new appointments bring a knowledge and understanding of the needs of commerce as well as a long experience with the fundamental principles of the law, giving the Courts additional expertise in areas such as Islamic finance as well as increasing the number of Emirati judges on our bench.”
The appointment of H.E Justice Shamlan Al Sawalehi is consistent with the DIFC Courts’ aim of uniting international legal knowledge and expertise to that of UAE nationals. Having an experience of international Common and Civil law systems of more than 16 years and served as a Small Claims Tribunal Judge at the DIFC Courts, he has now been promoted to the Court of First Instance. He has also served as the Director of Strategic Affairs at The Executive Office of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President, Prime Minister, Ruler of Dubai.
Justice Tun Zaki Azmi has remained Chief Justice of Malaysia and President of the Court of Appeal. In 1969, he started off as a barrister in London, however, today he is an internationally acknowledged expert of court excellence and Islamic finance.
With a particular expertise in commercial law and equity, Justice Roger Giles has been in the legal profession for over forty years. Previously, he has served as the Chief Judge of the Commercial Division of the Supreme Court of New South Wales and also served at the Court of Appeal.
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