NJI and EFCC To Record Phenomenal Achievements In Corruption Fight – CJN
The Chief Justice of Nigeria, CJN, Walter Onnoghen, has expressed optimism that the synergy between the National Judicial Institute, NJI, and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, will continue to record phenomenal achievements in the ongoing fight against corruption.
“It is my utmost belief that the synergy between the National Judicial Institute and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission will continue to record phenomenal achievements, most especially by expanding the knowledge base of our Judicial Officers, as well as being part of an extensive effort in the fight against corruption”, he said.
Onnoghen, who is also the Chairman, Board of Governors of the National Judicial Institute, made this known on Monday, October 29, 2018, during the second edition of a three-day capacity building workshop, organized by EFCC, in collaboration with NJI, for Justices and Judges, at the Andrew Otutu Obaseki Auditorium of the National Judicial Institute, Jabi, Abuja.
The workshop, with the theme, “Administration of Criminal Justice Act: Emerging Issues in the Investigation and Prosecution of economic and financial crimes” , was designed to address challenges arising from the implementation of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, (ACJA), 2015, with particular emphasis on the investigation and prosecution of economic and financial crimes.
The CJN, while declaring the ceremony open, described the theme as “apt and deliberate” and said the workshop will be extremely beneficial to the participants in the performance of their duties as it will sharpen their adjudicative skills in relation to daily challenges they encounter in the discharge of their duties.
According to him, “the Judiciary has been and will continue to live up to its constitutional mandate, by correctly applying the law and proactively supporting the government in its bid to ensure growth and stability in the society and rid it of corruption in line with the Rule of Law”.
In his goodwill message, Kayode Oladele, Chairman, House Committee on Finacial Crimes, said the timeline of the workshop could not be overemphasized as it came when the Judiciary is championing the fight against corruption.
“It is coming at a time when the Judiciary is championing the fight against corruption, by designating various Courts to exclusively handle corruption, money laundering, abuse of office and economic and financial crimes cases, in order to enhance speedy determination of high-profile corruption cases”, he said.
Oladele, who said that the fight against corruption cannot be won without the active support of the Judiciary, gave assurance of the continued support of the House of Representatives, in ensuring speedy and fair trial and urged the participants to make recommendations for further legislative work in order to enhance the Nigerian criminal justice administration system.
“The fight against corruption cannot be won without the active support of the Judiciary. While i want to assure you of the continued support of the House of Representatives in your quest to ensure speedy and fair trial in the adjudication of high profile corruption cases in Nigeria in accordance with the provisions of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act and the Constitution of Nigeria, I would like to urge this gathering to critically consider the innovative provisions in the ACJA with a view to making neccessary recommendations for further legislative work in order to enhance the Nigerian criminal justice administration system”, he said.
In her welcome address, Justice Roseline Bozimo, the administrator, NJI, said the theme was relevant in light of the current administration’s drive to confront corruption in all spheres of the economy.
She said, “this capacity building workshop is designed to update participants on emerging developments in combating corruption cases. It will also serve as an avenue to enlighten participants on global best practices adopted in confronting the challenges arising from this area of the law”.
While stating that the forum “will also serve to appraise the benefits and recent gains of the fight against corruption by the EFCC”, Bozimo said “topics bordering on Electronic Generated Evidence, Management of Assets under Interim and Final Orders of the Courts: Challenges and the Way Forward, as well as Dealing with Delays in the Administration of Criminal Justice are slated for discussion”.
She thanked the CJN for directing the Chief Judges of various States to designate Courts in their jurisdiction that will handle corruption cases, describing it as “a step in the right direction”.
She further expressed her gratitude to the acting Chairman of the EFCC, Ibrahim Magu and his management team, for collaborating with the NJI in organizing the workshop.
In his remarks, the EFCC boss, described the fight against corruption as his business, and that those who fight corruption make more enemies and loose many friends.
“My lords, ladies and gentlemen, let me say that as one of the heads of anti-graft agencies in Nigeria today, corruption fight is my business just as it should also be the business of every responsible person in this great country of ours. When you fight corruption, you naturally make more enemies and loose friends”, Magu said.
He further thanked the National Judicial Council, NJC, “for the ongoing internal cleansing by doing justice to the petition we forwarded in respect of judicial officers, who have betrayed their oath of office”.
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