OKOWA CALLS FOR EFFICIENT ADMINISTRATION OF CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM TO KEEP PACE WITH SOPHISTICATION OF CRIMINAL ACTIVITIES

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Delta State Governor, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa, has harped on the need for a vibrant administration of criminal justice system that will keep up with the increasing commission of sophisticated crimes occasioned by the advent of globalization and modernity.

Okowa made the call on Thursday in Asaba while declaring open a stakeholders’ summit on the review of the Delta State Administration of Criminal Justice Bill, 2016.

The Governor, who was represented by the Chief of Staff, Government House, Hon. Festus Ovie Agas, said in promulgating a workable criminal justice system, incidences of delayed trials, inordinate detention and awaiting trial syndrome, inefficient case management, reluctance of witnesses to give evidence, sentencing inadequacies and lack of restorative justice measures must be addressed by stakeholders in the system.

He stated that the summit underscored the importance his administration attached to the delivery of an efficient justice system, pointing out that the gathering, with the calibre of stakeholders in the administration of criminal justice system, would give the needed impetus to the reform process.

Okowa commended the State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Isaiah Bozimo and the Ministry of Justice for convening the summit and expressed optimism that the deliberations would birth a review of the administration of criminal justice law in tune with the present day realities.

This, the Governor said, would guarantee a more effective and efficient criminal justice administration system that would put Delta on top of the innovation map and lead to the reservation of the norms that the society could hold sacred.

Earlier, the State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Isaiah Bozimo, noted that the current administration of criminal justice system was still primarily focused on incarceration and punishment, rather than harm minimization through prevention, rehabilitation and restoration.

Bozimo said the transformation of the state’s criminal justice system would take time, pointing out that it would start with addressing immediate issues with the current system, followed by the delivery of a long-term plan for reorienting the system.

The AG thanked all critical stakeholders in the criminal justice sector for their contributions to the draft administration of criminal justice bill, 2022, disclosing that their submissions, coupled with his Ministry’s internal review, and visits to custodial centres helped to expose the inadequacies of the current criminal justice system.

The AG thanked all critical stakeholders in the criminal justice sector for their contributions to the draft administration of criminal justice bill, 2022, disclosing that their submissions, coupled with his Ministry’s internal review, and visits to custodial centres helped to expose the inadequacies of the current criminal justice system.

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