Governor Willie Maduabuchi Obiano of Anambra State has instituted an endowment fund for various categories of awards for the Annual Anambra State Chief Judge’s Dinner and Awards Night to encourage, support and improve the standards of Anambra State Judiciary.
The governor made the endowment at the 5th edition of the annual event in Awka, the state capital.
Obiano, who incidentally was one of the awardees this year, commended the state Chief Judge and organiser of the programme, Justice Peter Nnanna C. Umeadi for his visionary leadership and tireless efforts to reposition the State Judiciary.
He added that the CJ’s efforts are making justice available and accessible to the people of the state.
Other awardees included: G.R.I. Egonu (SAN); Senator N. N. Anah (SAN); Anambra State Commissioner for Police, H. H. Karma; Iduu J.B.C. Mmegwa and nine exemplary members of staff of Anambra State Judiciary.
Apart from the monetary endowments for various categories of awards and awardees, the governor pledged the sum of N2million annually to support the CJ’s Dinner and Awards Night.
The governor commended his predecessor in office, Mr. Peter Obi for his prudence in the management of the state resources which laid a solid economic base for his administration.
In his address, Justice Umeadi stated: “This is a dinner for the Judiciary of Anambra State where we have the pleasure to invite our guests from the executive and legislative arms of government in Anambra State and beyond. We hope therefore, to hear the speech from the Legislature with the Judiciary in mind to be delivered by the Speaker of the Anambra State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Rita Maduagwu, who is also a legal practitioner.
“It is hoped that with the pillar of rule of law ever before the Government, the Judiciary would not be routinely omitted from the chronicled achievements of government as it is the case presently” Umeadi stated.
He continued: “His excellency raised the standard of the event by his presence and enriched its content by the surprise endowment which followed. We specifically are grateful for the grants to the awardees and an annual endowment of the sum of N2 million to the dinner itself.
“ We pledge that the annual endowment would be put to the use of encouraging the learned Magistrates and Hon. Presidents of Customary Courts and in future Revenue Court Magistrates who do well in the quarterly assessment of their return of cases from the Judicial Service Commission”.
Concluding her keynote address on the topic “ Separation of powers; a key to the grundnorm ”Mrs. Mia Essien (SAN) said: “The judiciary is critical to the maintenance of good governance and a just society. It ensures that the grundnorm is not desecrated providing necessary checks and balances with regard to the actions of the executive and legislative arms of government”
The programme was attended by the Speaker of Anambra State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon Rita Mmaduagwu, the Chief of the Federal High Court, Justice Ibrahim Auta, Chief Judge of Ebony State, Justice Aloy Nwankwor, Chief Judge of Kogi State, Justice Nasir Ajana, Chief Judge of Yobe State, Justice G.M. Nabarunia, former Chief Judge of Delta State, Justice Z. A. Smith, Anambra State Commissioner for Police, H. H. Karma, 18 Senior Advocates of Nigeria, Chairmen and Secretaries of Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) branches in Anambra State.
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