From Yakubu Mustapha, Minna.
Former Head of State, General Abdulsalam Abubakar, Sokoto state Governor, Rt. Honorable Aminu Waziri Tambuwal and Niger state Governor, Alhaji Abubakar Sani Bello have urged that the judiciary be granted full autonomy to enable them carry out their duties independently without bias.
They spoke at the opening ceremony of the training of Magistrates and District Court Judges, Niger state in partnership with DFID and Judicial College in London aimed at improving their knowledge held at JILK ICC in Minna.
General Abdulsalam Abubakar in his address, said the judiciary need to be encouraged in terms of their welfare adding that this can only be possible if they are granted full autonomy.
He, however, lamented that bulk of the magistrate courts across the country are dilapidated and in need of repairs calling on the attention of government in addressing the judicial infrastructural decay.
“People need to be well trained to dispense justice because without justice, there will not be able peace and what we need is peace in this country.
Abdulsalam then commended the Niger state government for coming up with the initiative of training Tier 4 Judges saying it will go a long way in enriching the delivery of justice in Niger state.
The Sokoto state Governor, Rt. Honorable Aminu Waziri Tambuwal said granting full autonomy to the judiciary will curb corruption in the judicial system.
He stressed that the independence of the Judiciary is paramount to the administration of justice and development in Nigeria.
“I want to appeal to my colleagues on qll states to grant full autonomy to the judiciary. If we do not do that, we cannot get an independent and impartial judiciary. For Nigeria to grow, we need to have an independent and corrupt free judiciary.
“We should not expect our magistrates moving around and looking for help from wherever and expect them to administer justice without some kind of bias. For us to ensure that we have a corrupt free judiciary, there is need for us to do the needful.
He stated that granting full autonomy would encourage the Magistrates and Judges and encourage them to carry out their performance optimally.
Niger state Governor, Alhaji Abubakar Sani Bello said he decided to grant the state Judiciary financial autonomy in order to make them independent while dispensing justice.
He said that the financial autonomy has gone a long way towards the rehabilitation of some magistrate and sharia courts across the state adding that allowances are also being given to the Judges to enable them perform their duties optimally.
Bello then urged his other Governor Colleagues to grant the judiciary in the various states financial autonomy.
The five days judicial training of Magistrates and District court Judges of Niger state had in attendance 80 Magistrates to enable them to be able to confront the new challenges confronting the four courts in the discharge of their duties.