FG mobilises institutions to address justice system challenges


Attorney-GenerAl of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Abubakar Malami (SAN) yesterday said the federal government would mobilise institutions in the justice sector to come out with structures and policies that would address the various challenges militating against the justice system in the country. In a message through the Solicitor General of the Federation and Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Justice, Mr Taiwo Abidogun, to the National Summit on Justice held in Abuja yesterday, the minister said the summit was designed to provide opportunities and platforms that will strengthen collaboration, coordination and consensus-builders among justice sector institutions for effective service delivery and the promotion of the rule of law. While calling on state governments yet to constitute justice sector reform team to do that, Malami said given the challenges militating against effective justice administration and the peculiarity of the country’s federal system, the AGF and Minister of Justice said there was the need for the harmonisation and integration of the various justice sector reform initiatives into a clearly articulated policy that defines the philosophy, with respect to service delivery and provide a common direction for justice sector stakeholders across the country. He said, “The policy is expected to set out a common vision and provide the guidelines for promoting an effective and efficient administration of justice, guarantee the freedom of the people and propel the socio-economic development of the nation.” According to Malami, the need for a national policy on justice arose due to the absence of one that will address the imperative of building consensus among justice sector institutions and practitioners for the purpose of addressing collectively, the various challenges confronting the justice system. He said the final draft policy document from the two-day technical session would be considered by the wider stakeholders tomorrow for inputs, adoption and validation. The minister said the reform of the justice sector was a critical component of the overall agenda of the federal government to fight corruption, develop the economy, promote respect for human rights and due process and build public confidence in the justice systematic. Presenting the draft National Policy on Justice, Prof Mohammed Tabiu (SAN), who is the chairman of the Technical Policy Drafting Committee, said the goal of the national policy on justice was to achieve a justice system that inspires public confidence, keeps society secure and safe, provides a conducive environment for smooth social interactions and a flourishing economy. The policy, he said will among other things, ensure speedy dispensation of justice and effective enforcement of court decisions, promote human rights and access to justice for all, promote correctional and restorative justice and alternative dispute resolution and to preserve, maintain the plural character of the Nigerian legal system and to promote the independence and impartiality of the judiciary.



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