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Thursday, March 23, 2023

Activist to Constitutional Review Committee: Address Slow Pace of Justice Delivery in Nigeria

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In a bid to ensure quick dispensation of justice in various level of the Court in Nigeria, a human rights activist, Comrade Adeniyi Alimi Sulaiman has joined the Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, SAN, in the vanguard of addressing the slow pace of justice delivery in the nation’s Courts by proposing the timeline for the National Assembly
Committee on Constitutional review, saying that  application of quick delivery of justice to only political cases as we are experiencing in recent time, were not augur well for our Constitutional life as human being.

Comrade Sulaiman who is the Executive Chairman, Centre for Human Rights and Social Justice (CHRSJ), urged the Committee to review the timeline for the cause of action in our all levels of the Court in the country in order to ensure quick dispensation of justice to the parties in any matter before the Court.

It would be recalled that the Vice-President Osinbajo has been in the forefront of addressing the issue of delaying in processing cases through the nation’s courts.

Prof. Osinbajo, who restated his position recently on the subject matter as a Chairman of a WOC Justice Sector Reform Summit in honour and celebration of the 70th birthday of a legal luminary Chief Wole Olanipekun,SAN.

Osinbajo described the issue of delays in the judicial process as the ‘elephant in the room’, wondered what would happen to the country’s judicial system in “another 50 years given the gridlock in processing cases through the courts and the question of the integrity of the legal process, or better still, the integrity of actors in the legal
profession in Nigeria.”

The rights activist who then appealed to the committee of the current National Assembly on the Constitutional review to use the opportunity of the ongoing review of the amended 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria by giving timeline for the adjudication of cases in each level of our courts in order to save our judicial system from catastrophe and brouhaha.

Sulaiman who doubles as the Convener, Save Lagos Group (SLG), stated that the idea of spending 5 to 30 years on a case that should not more than two(2) years did not speak well of our judicial system among the comity of nations of the World, proposing the twelve (12) months for the Civil matter at the trial High Court and Criminal matter should take nine (9) months and Appeal for both Civil and Criminal matter should take eight (8) months, while the both Civil and Criminal matter should take four months in the Supreme Court which is the apex court of the land.

This was contained in a signed statement made available to newsmen on Wednesday, Sulaiman appealed to the members of the Constitutional Review Committee to look into this grave area of our national life, noting that the strong and effective judiciary was the bedrock of any democracy and judiciary served as the last hope of common man in the country.

Sulaiman supported its position with wise saying of “justice delayed is justice denied”, calling on the both members of the National Assembly to use their current position to sanitize our judicial system for effective political and human development, stressing that the timeline for the adjudication of cases in all our levels of Courts would help to make the people repose absolute confidence in our judicial system.

Commending the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) who doubles as Chairman, National Judicial Council (NJC), Honourable Justice Tanko Muhammad, GCON, Supreme Court Justices and President, Court of Appeal for their recent initiative on the new rule guiding the Appellate Court in order to save the respected Court of Appeal from being a dumping ground for frivolous appeal on injunctions of the trial courts.

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