Amid battle against COVID-19 pandemic, Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu has charged the judiciary to keep the wheel of justice administration moving well through the utilisation of new culture of justice dispensation driven by technology.
Sanwo-Olu gave the charge on Tuesday, at a swearing-in of the eight newly appointed judges of the High Court of Lagos, held in the Executive Council chamber of the State House, Alausa, Ikeja.
The eight judges took the oath before the Governor and some members of the State’s cabinet.
The newly appointed judges are Justice Dorcas Olatokun, Justice Yahqub Oshoala, Justice Omotola Oguntade, Justice Olufunke Sule-Amzat, Justice Rasul Olukolu, Justice Sharifa Olaitan, Justice Ezekiel Ashade and Justice Adeniyi Pokanu.
Addressing the appointees, Sanwo-Olu said the continuity of judicial services in the period of a public health emergency, remained vital to boosting people’s confidence in the administration of justice system and to ensure adequate enforcement of regulations initiated to stop the spread of the pandemic.
He said: “This chamber we are holding the swearing-in has just been opened for the first time in the last two months. This is the reality of the global coronavirus pandemic, which has evolved new culture in our interactions at homes and offices.
“In this period of a public health emergency, we need the judiciary to keep the wheel of the justice system moving. The administration of justice system must not be halted because of the health crisis.
“Our judicial should fully adapt to the evolving culture and be at the services of those who seek redress and justice at the court.
“I have no doubt that the Lagos State Judiciary, under the leadership of My Lord Justice Kazeem Alogba, will be an arm of Government that we can continue to rely on as a partner in boosting people’s confidence in Government and justice system.”
Sanwo-Olu said the judges were appointed based on their sterling credentials and experience in the respective areas of engagement.
The governor, therefore, charged the judges to dispense justice without fear or favour, advising them not to compromise hard-earned reputation and family names in the course of discharging their duties.
He said: “Having gone through your resumes, I know you have all distinguished yourselves in the legal profession and we expect you are bringing your years of experience and service. We are convinced this journey would raise the standards of our judicial service.
“I congratulate our newly sworn-in Honorable Justices and we believe you all have what it takes to be fair and equitable in the dispensation of justice to our citizens.
“By being sworn in as judges, you have brought honour to your family names. However, you must ensure that your names are not tarnished in the course of discharging your duty.”
The Governor used the occasion to re-emphasise his commitment to ridding the state of the ravaging pandemic, giving assurance that the state government would continue to collaborate with stakeholders on the frontline and coordinate response strategy to battle the virus.
He also promised to maintain transparency in communicating the response activities to the public.
Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Moyosore Onigbanjo, who described the event as “special occasion” in the evolution of judiciary in the state, added that the quality of credentials of the appointed judges, the state’s chief law officer ” will be brought to bear in fast-tracking administration of justice system in the state.”
Solicitor-General and Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Justice, Ms Titilayo Shitta-Bey, disclosed that the process of nomination of the judges was transparent and extended to different areas of the legal profession, public service, private sector and the magistracy.
On behalf, of the newly-appointed judges, Justice Olatokun, appreciated Governor Sanwo-Olu for finding them worthy of the appointment, which she described as a “unique privilege” to contribute their quota in deepening justice system.
She, therefore, pledged to be upright and fearless in the discharge of their duty.
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