Political

North East lawyers, judges receive training on criminal justice

Lawyers, judges, magistrates and law enforcement officers from Adamawa, Borno and Yobe States have been trained on the Administration of Criminal Justice Law, which seeks to eliminate unnecessary delays in criminal trials.

The training is organised by the Institute of Advance Legal Studies, in collaboration with the McArthur Foundation, aimed at increasing the understanding and awareness of judicial officers on the Administration of Criminal Justice Law.

It is equally part of efforts by Institute of Advance Legal Studies to train judicial officers across the country on the changes introduced by the Administration of the Criminal Justice Act, which was passed in 2015.

The Act has introduced some features aimed at fast tracking proceedings, because of undue adjournments, declining stay of proceedings pending appeal, while emphasising on the need for a day-to-day trial of criminal cases.

The Institute of Advance Legal Studies with the support of the McArthur Foundation and the National Judicial Council is going round all six geo-political zones to train the judicial officers on the features of the Administration of Criminal Justice Law.

According to the Director General, Institute of Advance Legal Studies, Mr. Adedeji Adekunle, the Administration of Criminal Justice Law consciously introduces a provision in the legal Framework that stipulates the number of adjournments available in a trial.

By consciously introducing provision in our legal framework that stipulates the number of adjournments available in a trial, by specifying protocols and time frames, for taking certain decisions, by ensuring that there are no interlocutory proceedings that will disturb the flow of the substantive trial, this act, this law has come to level the playing field, as it were and ensure that a trial is conducted as speedily as possible, Mr. Adekunle said.

The Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice, Adamawa State, Mr. Bala Silas, said the Administration of Criminal Justice Law was a law for the common man.

Mr. Sang’a, told Voice of Nigeria in Yola, that the training was to prepare the target group for the take-off and implementation of the Criminal Justice Law was law in the three states.

Mr. Sang’a said the administration of the Criminal Justice Law had an inbuilt Justice Sector Reform Committees, which oversee and ensure the compliance of the law, with an inbuilt mechanism to ensure that the law was complied with.

The whole target is to make sure that the generality of citizens do not suffer unnecessary delays during criminal trials. So, the essence of the training is to get everybody set for the takeoff of the law, particularly in Adamawa. Yobe and Borno, I think have passed theirs, but the implementation is another. So, it’s to get everybody set for the implementation of the law, said Mr. Sang’a.

The Project Officer of the EU Funded Rule of Law and Anti Corruption Programme implemented by the British Council, Mrs. Hafsat Abdullahi, The law is new here and we need to take up all the justice sector institutions together to understand the law, to understand the basics in the law and how it is going to be operating for it to operate effectively, Mrs. Abdullahi said.

Source: Voice of Nigeria