The Chief Justice of Nigeria, CJN, Justice Tanko Muhammad, has said that Nigeria will suffer grave effect if judicial officers are consistently deprived of requisite infrastructure.
Justice Muhammad made the remark at the commissioning of 24-bedroom duplexes built for Judges of Rivers origin serving both in the State and Federal Judiciaries at the Emmanuel Chinwenwo Aguma Judges Quarters in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
Justice Muhammad who was represented by Justice Mary Odili of the Supreme Court noted that judges would be more confident to dispense justice if they have good shelter and welfare.
“Lagos and Rivers States rank among the most litigious states. The implication is that manpower and materials are perennially stretched far beyond limit to attend to the large number of cases filed daily.
“That explains the enormity of work before judges. A good car, shelter and good welfare package are some of those things that can serve as magic wand to bring out the best from them.
“Whenever, we deliberately or inadvertently toil with the welfare of judicial officers, we are unconsciously inflicting a debilitating wound on the conscience of the nations.
“We are not ignorant of Governor Nyesom Wike’s huge investment to improve infrastructure of federal courts. You are today also giving to Judges a life long accommodation on owner- occupier basis, ” he said.
Governor Wike in his address, said the judiciary would be on a pedestal of efficiency and productivity with the support given to it by his administration.
“There is need to guarantee judicial independence and secure effective administration of justice. These are the overriding consideration for the unprecedented investment we have made in our judicial system.”x
“I cannot think of any state government with similar welfare scheme we have made. This will have profound and positive impact on judicial officers.
“We have moved our Judiciary from the valley of neglect to an enviable hilltop of independence, capacity and effectiveness,” he stated.