At the gathering of legal luminaries in Ikeja, Lagos to fathom and assess the challenges confronting the judiciary and judicial officers in the country
The event theme tagged “Combating Grand Corruption and Impunity in Nigeria: Agenda for Institutional Reforms in Anti-corruption Strategies.” was launched yesterday by SERAP in Lagos state.
The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has further called on the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Onnoghen, to reform the country judiciary and sanction judicial officers, judges handling money laundering, corruption matters who neglect to adhere to the core provisions of Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015.
According to the provisions of the Act makes provisions for fast track proceedings of trial of criminal cases, court not honoring frivolous application for adjournment from litigants and lawyers, who duty is to uphold the law now engaging in mischievous strategies of delaying/stalling court proceeding most at lower courts of records.
SERAP further urged the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Onnoghen to ensure that all courts of record presiding and handling corruption matters conduct themselves with integrity and adhere to the core provisions of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act.
At the unveiling of the event SERAP further disclosed that investigation reviewed that prosecuting and defence counsel had adopted delay strategies and resorted to unnecessary prolonging examination-in-chief, cross-examination and re-examination of witnesses in the court room.
It was further disclosed that Act provides for an order to ensure that court proceedings in criminal matters were stream down and such matters got adjourned endlessly after the ACJA had abolished stay of proceedings in criminal matters, which was used by unprepared litigants and lawyers in a matter to frustrate criminal cases.
SERAP prayed the Hon. Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Onnoghen to curb the menace in the judiciary, engage judicial officers in training and empowerment.