From Nwadike Ugochukwu, Port Harcourt
Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has called on Magistrates across the country to be fearless and firm in their dispensation of justice.
Speaking when he granted audience to the Members of the National Executive Committee of the Magistrates Association of Nigeria, Governor Wike said that the functions of Magistrates remain vital to the dispensation of justice in the country.
He urged Magistrates to stop the practice of returning case files on the basis that they are afraid of the antics of certain interests and those who will malign them after delivering judgment.
He said: “judicial officers should not abdicate their responsibilities because they are afraid of petitions. If everyone throws in the towel, who will dispense justice?”
While noting that every profession has its inherent risks, Governor Wike advised the magistrates to always remain focused as they deliver judgements within the ambit of the law.
The governor approved the request of the Magistrates Association of Nigeria that the biennial delegates conference be hosted in Port Harcourt.
He said the state will be hosting several national events between May and October in response to the improving security in the state.
Earlier, the President of Magistrates Association of Nigeria, . Victoria Isiguzo called on Governor Wike to support the hosting of the Biennial delegates conference where new executives will be elected for the association.
She commended the governor for granting financial autonomy to the State Judiciary and approving the procurement of official vehicles for Magistrates.