The jurisdiction of the Addis Ababa City courts is mentioned in the EFDRE Proclamation No. 311/2003. According to Article 41 of The Addis Ababa City Government Revised Charter these courts will have the following jurisdiction over civil and criminal and petty offence.

On Civil Matters

In Civil Jurisdiction the Addis Ababa City Courts will have power in such cases as;

  1. Suits of possessory right, issuance of permit or land use relating to the enforcement of the city master plan;
  2. Suits arising in connection with the regulatory powers and functions of the executive and municipal service bodies of the city government.
  3. Suits arising from fiscal matters set out under4 Art 52 ( i.e. the City Government will have power over assessing and collecting income taxes, set and collect land use fees, levy taxes on income from agricultural activities in the city, etc)
  4. Suits arising from the administrative contracts concluded by the executive and municipal service bodies of the city Government or by the enterprises under the ownership of the city government.
  5. Suits arising between the executive and municipal service bodies or between the enterprises of the City Government
  6. Suits arising in connection will the government owned houses administered by the city Government. ( e.g.:- condominiums, etc)
  7. Applications to change names
  8. Applications to change names
  9. Applications of succession and guardianship and  /or tutorship or spousal certificates,

10.  Applications for the declaration of absence or presumption of death.

On Criminal Matters

On the other hand, the Addis Ababa city courts have power over criminal and petty offences such as:

  1. Offences committed in connection will fiscal material set out under Article 52 of the charter.
  2. Cases of petty offences
  3. Without the prejudice to the jurisdiction of federal courts, remand in custody and bail applications on federal offences.
  4. Cases of execution of penalties imposed upon petty offences by the executive and municipal services bodies of the city government, Provided that the other provision, of this Article is effective.

Conflict Resolution

  1. Whenever there shall arise conflict between the Addis Ababa City Courts and Federal Courts, the Federal Supreme Court shall decide.
  2. In case of a party alleging a fundamental error of law in the final judgment rendered in cassation by the Addis Ababa City Appellate court may apply for cassation before the Federal Supreme Court.
  3. And when  a party alleges a fundamental error of law in final judgment of the Addis Ababa city  appellate courts may apply for cassation of the Federal Supreme Court

The city Government shall have the labor Relations Board, Civil Service Tribunal, Tax Appeals Commission and Urban Land Clearance Matters Appeals Commission entrusted with judicial powers (Art 40)

Civil Service Tribunal

Accordingly, the civil service Tribunal of the city Government shall have the power to entertain appeals of the civil servants of the city Government lodged before it in accordance wilt the civil service law of the city Government and the organization and procedures of the civil service Tribunal shall be defined by the law to be issued by the city council (Art 47).

Tax Appeals Commission

Similarly, the Tax Appeals Commission of the city has the power to entertain appeals lodged before it concerning taxes and duties collectable by the City Government.  Furthermore notwithstanding the provisions of the tax laws, the organization and mode of operation of the commission shall be defined by law issued by the city (Art 48).

City Urban Land Clearance Matter Appeal commission

In case of urban land clearance the Addis Ababa City Urban Land Clearance Matter Appeal commission shall operate in accordance with the Urban Lands Lease Holding Proclamation No. 272/2002 and the organization and operations of the commission is defined by the law to be issued by the city council.

The Keble Social Courts

Lastly, the Keble social courts have jurisdiction over cases regarding property and monetary claims where the amount involved does not exceed birr 5000(five thousand Birr).

The law to be issued by the city council shall determine the jurisdiction of kebele social courts over the city hygiene and public health contraventions and other similar petty offences, Notwithstanding the fact that a matter decided by the first instance court on appeal contains a fundamental error of law which can be a ground to lodge cassation before the Appellate court of the city.

A party having dissatisfaction on a decision of a kebele social court may appeal to the respective First Instance Court of The City.  The decision rendered by the latter shall be final. The organization and operations of kebele social courts shall be defined by law to be issued by the city council.

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