Criminal justice: Anambra govt partners judiciary on protection programme

By Sunny A. David, Awka

Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra State says his administration in collaboration with the state Judiciary, is developing an effective witness protection program to facilitate prosecution of cases under the state’s criminal justice system.

Governor Obiano disclosed this during a Eucharistic Mass held at St. Patrick’s Catholic Cathedral to mark the commencement of the 2018/2019 Legal Year in Anambra State.

The Governor, who identified the reluctance of witnesses to testify as the bane of the criminal justice system, said the measures which his government is working out in partnership with the Judiciary will not only speed up processes in the system but also ensure that those held in prisons for no just cause are granted freedom.

Thanking the state judiciary for their immense support that has enabled his government to succeed.

Governor Obiano noted that he has resolved all pending issues bordering on their welfare such as cars for judges, payment of workers’ leave and training allowances as well as emoluments of retired judges among others.

He also commended the State House of Assembly and the Judiciary for expressly consenting to the establishment of revenue courts across the state.

Wishing the State Judiciary a successful legal year ahead, Governor Obiano assured them that as an integral arm of the State government, he is committed to supporting them be at their best in the discharge of their duty.

The State Chief Judge, Justice Peter Umeadi said Anambra State Judiciary under his leadership will continue to do its best to avail Ndi Anambra prompt dispensation of Justice and thanked Governor Obiano for identifying with them on the celebration.

Earlier in a homily, the Catholic Bishop of Awka Diocese, Most Reverend Paulinus Ezeokafor reminded judicial officers of the need to use their hallowed profession to give direction to the nation’s leaders especially as it has to do with giving justice to the oppressed and challenging the unwarranted attack on freedom of religion and herdsmen killings across the country.

He urged legal practitioners to always shine the light by embracing godliness and shunning all forms of ungodliness in their practice.

The event which was well attended by members of the Bar and Bench from within and outside the state, aims to bring practitioners together to pray and seek the face of God for a successful new legal year.

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