..discloses intention to return to legal practice after leaving office
Yenagoa Governor Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa State has called for more funding for the Judicial arm of government to enable it to function optimally.
He made the call yesterday at the 2019 Legal Year and Valedictory Court Session in honour of retired Justice Emmanuel Ogola, at the High Court of Justice, Yenagoa.
Dickson noted that his administration took deliberate steps to strategically reposition the state Judiciary to make it one of the best in the country.
His words, “Judicial financial autonomy is critical to the proper functioning of the Judiciary. Bayelsa is a pioneer in this area. After our government signed the Judicial Financial Autonomy into law, the recession hit us; it was a case of the spirit willing while the body became weak.”
He expressed the state government’s commitment to the completion of ongoing projects in the various sectors particularly the Judiciary quarters before the end of his administration.
He said that contractors would be mobilized to site to resume work on the edifice that would accommodate 17 courts before the end of the week.
Dickson, who also spoke on the planned provision of official vehicles for judges and magistrates in the state, restated his resolve to ensure that the vehicles are procured.
Commending the Chief Judge òf the State, Hon Justice Kate Abiri, for providing exemplary leadership and the introduction of electronic recording in the judiciary, Dickson assured that the multi Door Court House Bill which has been passed by the State House of Assembly would be signed into law soon.
The governor told the leaders and members of the bar and the bench that it was his plan to return to effective legal practice at the end of his second tenure as governor.
He commended retired Justice Emmanuel Ogola for over 20 years meritorious service in the Judiciary.
“Our state is in transition. In the next three months, i will round off my second tenure as governor. We have some plans and one of those plans is my return to active legal practice. So today for me, it’s very touching,” he said.
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In her address, the State Chief Judge, Justice Kate Abiri, said during the previous legal year, steps were taken to ensure speedy dispensation of justice.
Justice Abiri, however, lamented that funding has been the problem of the Judiciary especially in the execution of capital projects.
She also highlighted other achievements and shortcomings of the Judiciary during the period under review.
Earlier, a church service was held to kick start the new legal year.
In a sermon titled, “God’s Passion For Justice,” Pastor Isaac Olori, International Director of Greater Evangelism World Crusade, urged those charged with the responsibility of administering justice to give the deserved attention to the pertinence of impartial, fairness and professionalism.
He described the role of Judges as sacred and critical having been given the power to determine issues of life and death.
Pastor Olori called for the appointment of more judges to make justice more accessible through quick dispensation of justice.