A former president of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) and a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Dr Olisa Agbakoba, SAN has condemned continuous reliance of the judiciary on the executive arm of government to get funds to run its affairs.
Agbakoba said this at a briefing with journalists in Lagos.
According to the senior lawyer, the challenges facing the judiciary are multi-faceted but such need not to be complicated by the judiciary by making itself reliant on another arm of government.
“The Judiciary as a separate arm of government should have its independence like it is in Kenya. The Judiciary no doubt needs reform in Nigeria. That way, it would be more assertive. The biggest challenge facing this arm of government is the slow pace of justice. And the underlying challenge to that is in the area of funding.
“It still beats my imagination that after approaching the court and obtaining a judgement that by constitutional provision, the judiciary should no longer approach the executive for funding, the practice still continues. I remember that I met the Chief Justice of Nigeria with a copy of the judgement delivered and I said all you need to do is to take this and make it known to the National Assembly and from there you can always go to submit the budget to the assembly. But I’m surprised when I still see judges with their hands in the back, submitting their budgets to the executive,” Agbakoba said.
The former NBA president also asked the judges to avoid being laid back in cases brought before them in courts, saying case determination in the developed world has moved from “administrative judgement” to “case management.”
12 December, 2017