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February 24, 2017

CJN identifies corruption as major challenge of Judiciary

The Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Mahmud Mohammed said Monday that corruption was a major problem in the nation’s Judiciary sector.

He said measures were being intensified to curb the menace, which informed the unveiling of a National Judicial Policy (NJP) in Abuja Monday by the National Judicial Council (NJC).

Justice Mohammed, who is also the Chairman of the NJC, said: “It would be stating the obvious to opine that the greatest single menace that challenges the justice system in Nigeria today is corruption.

“This endemic vice is not peculiar to any region and ethnic group, cutting across faiths, religious denominations, levels of education and economic status.

“Corruption has serious implications for both the rule of law and access to justice, and must be fought both institutionally and individually.

“This is why the National Judicial Policy contains clear provisions restating the Judiciary’s commitment to transparency and accountability.

“This is clearly spelt out in Paragraph 5.1 of the National Judicial Policy 2016, thus- ‘the National Judicial Policy recognizes that the greatest and most damaging challenge to administration of justice is corruption and that tackling this challenge must go beyond mere exhortation and sentiments.’

“The policy gives the legal backing for several multifaceted strategies and guidelines to be developed while the Judiciary continues to walk the talk in ridding corrupt Judicial Officers from its ranks, strictly in accordance with due process and the rule of law,” the CJN said.

Justice Mohammed, who spoke at the launch of the NJP, noted that the absence of such policy in the past has occasioned an uneven growth of the Judiciary.

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