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4 1976




Administrative instructions.

27. —With a view to securing consistency in the administration of this Act, the Minister may issue instructions to county registrars with regard to the practice and the procedure to be adopted by them in the discharge of their duties under this Act; but nothing in this section shall authorise the Minister to issue any instruction as to whether particular persons should or should not be summoned for service as jurors or, if summoned, should or should not be excused from attendance in accordance with the summons.

Person standing mute.

28. —Whenever a person charged with an offence to be tried with a jury stands mute when called upon to plead, the issue whether he is mute of malice or by the visitation of God shall be decided by the judge and, if the judge is not satisfied that he is mute by the visitation of God, the judge shall direct a plea of not guilty to be entered for him.

Jury service by employees and apprentices.

29. —(1) For the purposes of any contract of service or apprenticeship or any agreement collateral thereto (including a contract or agreement entered into before the passing of this Act), a person shall be treated as employed or apprenticed during any period when he is absent from his employment or apprenticeship in order to comply with a jury summons.

(2) Any provision contained in any such contract or agreement shall be void in so far as it would have the effect of excluding or limiting any liability of the employer in respect of the payment of salary or wages to the employee or apprentice during any such absence.

Commission de lunatico inquirendo.

30. —Whenever a panel of jurors is lawfully in attendance before a commissioner under a commission de lunatico inquirendo, then, for the purposes of this Act, the commissioner shall be deemed to be a court and also a judge of the court.

Liability to serve on coroner's jury.

31. —Every citizen of the age of eighteen years or upwards and under the age of sixty-five years residing in a coroner's district shall be qualified and liable to serve on the jury at any coroner's inquest held in that district unless he is ineligible or disqualified under this Act for jury service or is among the persons specified in Part II of the First Schedule.

Non-application of provisions to coroners' inquests.

32. —Nothing in this Act except section 31 shall apply to a coroner's inquest, and in this Act the word “jury” does not include a jury at such an inquest and the word “juror” does not include a juror serving on such a jury.

Restriction of functions of sheriff.

33. —The powers and duties conferred and imposed on a county registrar under this Act shall be exercised and performed by him notwithstanding anything in section 12 of the Court Officers Act, 1945 (which refers to the duties of sheriffs) or in any order made thereunder.