By RevEREND Father John Damian Adizie
The world is gradually becoming an arena of injustice and oppression —a world where people are no longer feeling secured due to injustice, inequality and insincerity. The violence, hardship and killings we are facing in our world today is as a result of injustice which has to do with discrimination, inequality and unfair hearing; couple with delay and total denial of justice.
An unjust society is one where the rich get richer while the poor are getting poorer; a world where the leaders are inflicting undue hardship on their citizens, like what is happening right now at Imo State where the government has destroyed so many local markets, rendering poor market women jobless and homeless, without pro-per relocation and compen-sation; a world where peo-ple are killed indiscrimi-nately without anybody being brought to book; like what happened at Benue State where several inno-cent citizens were butchered in cold blood, yet nobody was arrested; a world where people are imprisoned with-out fair hearing; a world where people could not even express themselves freely without intimidation and even assassination; a world where people are not allowed to practice their re-ligion freely; a world where the best academic and medical ser-vices are reserved for the rich alone —is indeed an un-just society.
A free and just society, on the other hand, is a society where justice is upheld as the ultimate goal; a society where there is respect for the fundamental human rights; a society with rule of law; where there is respect and love for people of all tribes, race and nationality irr-espective of their colour, sex and religion. A just society is a society where people’s opinion is respected; where leaders are at the service of the people. it is a society where people are given equal opportunity irresp-ective of their political, so-cial and religious affiliation. It is a society where people’s right and dignity are res-pected; where human life is more valuable than animal and other values in the world. Can we still find such society in our world today? If yes, where?
Reflecting on the level of injustice in our world, His Holiness, Pope Francis, laments: “I think of the difficulties, which, in va-rious countries, today afflict the world of work and bu-siness; I think of how many are unemployed many ti-mes due to a purely econo-mic conception of society, which seeks selfish profit, beyond the parameters of social justice.” For the Holy Father, therefore, the high level of unemployment and hardship we are facing today is a clear indication that our world is nothing but an unjust society.
Considering the high level of injustice that perverse our society, the UN General Assembly has declared February 20 as World Day of Social Justice. For them justice is the essence of dev-elopment and the best way to promote human dignity. Social justice is therefore the promotion of justice for all citizens in a given so-ciety. The theme of this year’s World Social Justice Day is: “Workers on the Move: the Quest for Social Justice.” In her Declaration on Social Justice for a fair Globaliza-tion the International Labour Organization guarantees fair and just treatment for all, through employment, social dialogue, fundamental prin-ciples and rights at work.
The organization is actually out to build a free, fair and just society based on social justice.
Social justice is among the guiding principles that exist in a just society. It is a fund-amental principle that gua-rantees peaceful and mutual coexistence among various people in a given society. They are those guiding principles that promote the wellbeing and welfare of every indivi-dual in a given society.
Social justice is a principle that promotes equality at all levels, especially, gender and social equality. It upholds the right of all citizens, especially the rights of widows, orphans, migrants and indeed the rights of the less privileged in every society.
Pope Francis has contri-buted immensely in the promotion of social justice. He has even created a new department that focuses on helping the migrants, unemployed and care for the environment.
He went as far as en-couraging all those who promote social justice in the following words: “To all people of good will who are working for social justice: never tire of working for a more just world, marked by greater solidarity!” http://www.azquotes.com/author/5099-Pope_Francis
With the Holy Father Pope Francis, I wish to commend all those who are promot-ing social justice in our world today.
Social justice is indeed the solution to all the problems in our world today. Without justice there will be no peace and without peace there will be no develop-ment.
So, for peaceful coexist-ence and mutual develop-ment — let there be justice!