The Nigerian Bar Association, NBA, has said the implementation of Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015 in states across the country will help tackle existing and emerging areas of crime and criminality in the country.
The association also said the implementation of the Act will also ensure the effective and efficient administration of the criminal justice system.
At a one day state validation Public forum with relevant stakeholders meeting in Akwa-Ibom organised by NBA-MAC ARTHUR project team, the association said since the introduction of the ACJA 2015, only selected States of the Federation have successfully domesticated the Act; thus making it imperative for increased sensitization to promote the domestication and harmonized implementation of the ACJA 2015 across Nigeria.
The 3rd Vice President of the NBA, Ben Orji Esq, who represented the President of the NBA, Abubakar Mahmoud, SAN said, “the administration of criminal justice project supported by MacArthur Foundation falls squarely within the thematic areas set out in the NBA strategic plan and include: Justice sector reforms, rule of law and access to justice, elections and democracy, human rights, anticorruption and, lastly, conflict resolution and transitional justice”.
In her welcome address, Eno-Obong Akpan, Esq, Chairman of Uyo Branch of the NBA, noted that the state validation public forum is timely and entirely appropriate in providing a platform for participants to discuss elaborately, share ideas and best practices that will assist the various institutions in the criminal justice system to effectively implement the administration of Criminal Justice (ACJA) 2015, which has been domesticated by various states across the Federation.
Delivering the opening remarks, Muritala Abdul-Rasheed, Esq, who gave the overview of the project stated that; “it is a three-year NBA Administration of Criminal Justice project supported by MacArthur Foundation, which aims to strengthen the Nigerian criminal justice system and promote wide-spread criminal justice reform across Nigeria.
He added that: “The purpose of today`s validation public forum with stakeholders in Akwa Ibom state is to assemble key stakeholders, ACJ practitioners and members of the public at state-level to validate the Akwa Ibom ACJ Law.
The workshop is also scheduled to take place in other phase1 states of Bayelsa, Edo, Ogun, Kano, Kogi, Jigawa, Bauchi and Adamawa.
In his opening speech, the Attorney General of Akwa Ibom State, Uwemedimo Nwoko, Esq commended the executive Governor of Akwa Ibom and the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly for partnering together to enact and bring into effect the Administration of Criminal Justice Law of Akwa Ibom State, which he said, came into effect on the 21st of March, 2017.
He expressed confidence that, the state will in no distant future, begin to reap the proceeds of its implementation. He then went on to declare the workshop open on behalf of the State Governor.
Doosuur Iwambe – Abuja