The Ekiti State Governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi, on Monday stressed the need for the state to convene a justice, crime prevention and security cluster with the goal to reduce crime.
He said that cluster, which would comprise the judiciary, ministry of justice, correctional services, police, civil defence and Amotekun corps, “will essentially be to reduce crime by improving the efficiency of our criminal justice system.”
Fayemi, who spoke in Ado Ekiti during the swearing-in of the new Chief Judge for the state, Justice John Adeyeye, said judiciary should be part of ongoing interventions in response to security concerns.
The governor said, “This proposed cluster is about strengthening coordination and better communication among different agencies within the cluster. This coordination gives government a framework for achieving its vision on building safer communities.
“Like other states in the Federation, Ekiti State is witnessing its own fair share of security challenges. It seems to me that we are now at that point where the judiciary needs to be part of on-going interventions in response to these security concerns,” he said.
The governor also advocated virtual court hearing for non-contentious cases as well as the establishment of designated courts with mandate to prioritise commercial cases.
He canvassed the need for the state to introduce electronic filing system, especially for commercial cases, and the creation of alternative dispute resolution framework that would include incentives for mediation.
Fayemi urged the Judicial Service Commission to consider the desirability of ensuring that qualified young lawyers especially women were given opportunity to be appointed to the bench, adding that the state judiciary should make efforts to target suitable candidates under the age of 40.
Earlier, Justice Adeyeye, in his address, had promised to key into the concept of virtual court hearing and ensure that delay in dispensation of justice becomes a thing of the past.