Idowu Olakunle, Abeokuta
Ogun State Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun says the introduction of the Case Management and Scheduling System by the State Judiciary, will help in fast tracking justice administration since the Law Courts remain the last defender of the common man.
Prince Abiodun stated this in Abeokuta at the launch of the Case Management and Scheduling Manual System, noting that it was time for the Judiciary to embrace digitalisation in order to speed up its justice delivery system.
“We believe the courts are the last bastion of defense for the common man; thus, it is imperative that we prioritise improving the effectiveness and efficiency of our justice administration system, with data-driven technology-based initiatives,” he said.
“It is based on this premise that the introduction of the Case Management and Scheduling System by the Judiciary is a welcome development. This innovative platform which is being piloted with six judges of the Ogun State High Court will provide end-to-end digital case management tools, to enable electronic management of cases curb delays in the judicial process and promote convenience for both the judiciary and parties who come before the court.”
Abiodun said the State Judiciary was not new to ICT, as it was the first in the country to issue practice directions that allowed virtual hearings to take place during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown of 2020, stressing that since then, the State had moved towards technology-based reforms to improve the administration of justice.
The governor noted that some of the reforms include, Justice Clock – a digital tracker used to monitor the time spent by the public prosecutions department, Custody Monitoring Dashboard, a system being utilised by the Police to record and monitor the length of time suspects are kept in police custody, as well as the Corrections Information Management System, a platform deployed by the State Command of Nigerian Correctional Services to record and monitor the length of time (pre-trial) suspects are kept in custody.
He pledged that his administration would continue to provide good governance based on the tenets of inclusiveness, fairness, justice, equity, accountability, transparency and obedience to the rule of law.
Abiodun lauded the United States of America Mission in Nigeria for their support to the State Judiciary, towards the preparation of a manual, pointing out that it would mark the beginning of a new era for improving the efficiency of justice administration and ultimately impact the ease of Doing Business for the benefit of the State and its people.
Speaking, the United States of America Ambassador to Nigeria, Mary Leonard, said the system which was initiated early this year, represented an important milestone of great example of the ingenuity, collaboration and commitment on the part of the State Government, partners and the people.
In his remark, Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Olakunle Oluomo pledged that the House would continue to pass into Law, Bills that would enable people have access to justice, irrespective of their status, appreciating the American government for their support.
In her address, Chief Judge of the State, Hon. Justice Mosunmola Dipeolu, opined that digitalisation would aid quick dispensation of cases and make the job easier with the ripple effect of attracting more investors to the State.
She implored stakeholders in the judiciary sector to embrace the digitalisation process and case scheduling, as it would remove unnecessary and frivolous delays experienced in the litigation process, assuring that the State Judiciary would provide materials needed for the success of the Programme.