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Ibadan NBA Demands Overhaul of Judicial System
  • Posted: 17/Dec/2015
  • Lawyers, judges and magistrates in Oyo State, yesterday converged on Ibadan, the state capital, to beam searchlight on causes of delay in justice dispensa­tion in the country, blam­ing themselves and the police for the system.

    Agreeing that many in­nocent persons have been confined to undue prison terms for years either as awaiting trial inmates or prisoners, the legal prac­titioners at the Law Week of Ibadan branch of the Nigerian Bar Association, NBA, led by Mr. Kazeem Gbadamosi, called for an ur­gent overhaul of the system with all stakeholders en­joined to employ sincerity of purpose in their various callings.

    Present at the annual Law Week with the theme, “Fast tracking the admin­istration of justice in Oyo state: The need for stake­holders’ intervention,” include Chief Judge of the state, Justice Mukthar Abimbola, Justices of the High Court and Magis­trates, Mr Adebayo Ad­enipekun (SAN), Mr Akin Onigbinde (SAN), Solicitor General and Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Jus­tice, Prince Adetunji Gbade­gesin, Ronke Ige of the Jus­tice Development and Peace Commission (JDPC), Mr Jide Olanipekun (Secretary of Oyo branch of the NBA), Dr. Oluwole Akintayo, Prin­cipal lecturer at the Law Faculty of the University of Ibadan, among others.

    Justice Bayo Taiwo while opening the discourse as anchor person, categorised causes of delay in the ad­ministration of criminal justice system in the state to delay in investigation, delay by the Ministry of Justice and delay from the courts.

    His observations covered slow and care-free attitude of law enforcement agen­cies, non- availability of equipment to investigate crimes, lack of funding and problem of gathering witnesses to testify in cases, among others.

    On the part of the Minis­try of Justice, law officers were blamed for non-diligent prosecution of many cases, inadequate law officers for prosecution, as well as lack of conducive courtroom en­vironment in terms of lack of electronic gadgets for re­cording, leading to judges writing proceedings in labo­rious long hand; deliberate delay by many counsel, oc­casioning unnecessary ad­journments, among others.

    Adenipekun (SAN), Head of Afe Babalola Cham­bers, blamed some lawyers who would file cases for their clients when they know the case is a bad one.

    He said, “Some of us do this to buy time and get mon­ey from clients. If you know your client has no case, why file any application? Doing so unnecessarily congests the courts.”

    He similarly identified in­adequate number of judges, as well as inadequate fund­ing from the government, thus affecting the welfare and health of many judges and legal officers from the Ministry of Justice, as one of the causes of delay in justice administration.

    Other discussants on the occasion also shed light on the issue, with all agreeing that all stakeholders should wake up to their responsibil­ities to advance the course of the judiciary and give room for faster justice dispensa­tion in the state.

    Chairman of Ibadan branch of the NBA, Gbada­mosi, however, lauded the Chief Judge for the series of reforms already carried out in the system, including ren­ovation of Iyaganku High Court rooms.

    He nevertheless, called for installation of air-condition­efforts.

    By: Kemi Olaitan
    National Mirror News