With Soliu Woru Mohammed
There have been criticisms against unnecessary delay or administration of justice in court by the general public. Some accused the police of causing unnecessary delay in trial of the accused persons; some alleged that the judiciary is responsible while others blame the government through the Ministry of Justice for that malady. To some schools of thoughts, defence counsels are to be held responsible. Whatever the case, the popular opinion is that cases are not speedily tried. It should therefore dawn on those responsible for the administration of justice, the court, the police and lawyers to rise up to this ugly challenge and ensure that cases are speedily tried without undue delay by any arm of the government to achieve the desired quick dispensation of justice.
The government on its part should employ more judicial officials, i.e. the Magistrates and Judges at all levels. Efforts must also be intensified to employ more prosecution counsels, while more police prosecutors should be trained. The practice where judges write in long hands must be discouraged. Judges are advised not to entertain unnecessary request for adjournment from the prosecution counsels or defence. However, justice rushed can lead to the miscarriage of justice, this must be noted by both side.
To ensure speedy trial of cases, counsel are advised to always advise their client adequately and correctly in the issue of plea, bearing in mind that where an accused person pleaded guilty to charges, the punishments may be reduced.
In a nutshell, the accused should not be encouraged by their counsel to waste the time of the court unnecessarily. Where an accused person is convicted, the punishment provide by the law include – imprisonment, fine, canning and remand. An accused found guilty stands the chance of being discharged and acquitted. Whatever be the case, the duty of crime prevention and detection is the responsibility of all and sundry and should not be left to the law enforcement agents alone. It is therefore necessary for you and me to rise up to the challenge and refrain ourselves from engaging in any act of criminality. In this direction, an informant or a person who volunteers to give evidence in court must be paid transport allowance, same to all police informants. Creation of more judicial divisions in various parts of the country must be embarked upon, while the welfare of judicial officials must be looked into.