The Governor of Imo State, Senator Hope Uzodimma Wednesday, gave assent to a bill for a law to make provisions for the Procedure in the Administration of Criminal Justice in Imo State, which has paved the way for the State Laws No. 2 of 2020.
The Governor expressed his resolve to make the pursuit of justice easier for citizens of the state. “This law today has been accomplished through the efforts of our House of Assembly in their cause and quest to make life more meaningful to the people,” he said.
Giving insight on the law, Governor Uzodimma stated that the sole aim is to fastrack criminal justice for citizens He reflected: “When in 2015, the National Assembly promulgated and got the assent of the President to bring into place the Criminal Justice Act, the purpose was very simple, –to fast track criminal justice to our citizenry; to manage and ensure that operations of the institutions responsible for making criminal justice available to our citizens are effective.”
Governor Uzodimma added: “With this in place, our prisons will now be decongested, with this in place, our criminal justice will be readily available for our people, with this in place, the judiciary is once more equipped to dispense justice without fear or favour.”
The Attorney-General of the State, Barrister Cyprian Akaolisa stated that the whole essence of the Bill is to remove all barriers in the Criminal Justice administration system.
He said: “With the law in place, all aspects of speedy administration of justice has been taken care of. Those small handicaps that impede the administration of justice and make cases continue to be in courts for long periods of time, accused persons remanded in custody without trial for long periods of time, all these things have been taken care of.”
Akaolisa further stated that with the law in place, when an accused person is charged to Court, there is period his matter must be heard or the person will be discharged. The era of ‘awaiting trials’ is over.