By Catherine Philip Jelani
The Administration of Criminal Justice Monitoring Committee ACJMC members headed by the State Chief Judge, Hon. Hafsat Abdulrahman held a quarterly meeting for the year 2024 at JSC Hall of the State High Court today 8th February 2024.
In her welcome remarks, the Chief Judge of the State, Hon. Hafsat said that she is glad that all the key players in the Justice sectors were in attendancem, her words; " I am glad all the key players in the Justice sector are here present today to enable us meet and take concret steps towards promoting a more efficient and coordinated services to every citizen in Adamawa State."
Hon. Abdulrahman recalled that the committee's last meeting was held in 2022 where British Council (ROLAC) supported the establishment of the Committee and since then, the Committee has been docile for a while due to financial constraints but, " we will endeavour to make use of the little resources to ensure we forge ahead."
On the other hand ' the Chief Justice was glad to announce to the members that a donor support has come to partner with the committee in promoting the activities of the Committee. " We have in our midst is a donor support, Public Private Development Center PPDC an NGO working on Access to Justice ( Court Administration and Case Management) CACM & Reforming Pre-trial Detention in Nigeria RPDD II working with four States and the FCT is ready to support these committee in discharging our satutory mandates and in fact supporting today's meeting ".
The Public Private Development Center PPDC Program Manager, Barr. Fatima Raji in her remark on behalf of the CEO PPDC, the State Program Officer of PPDC in Adamawa State, Barrister Fatima Bello Raji explained that the partnership with the Adamawa State Administration of Criminal Justice Monitoring Committee (ACJMC) was to improve access to dispensation of justice for Nigerians, improve Citizen’s interaction with Government/law using Transparency tools and enhance States’ capacities to effectively investigate and prosecute cases. She also expressed profound gratitude to the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) for funding the 3-year project which Adamawa State is now benefitting from.
In a briefing, the Chief Judge of the State, Hon. Hafsat Abdulrahman revealed that the Criminal Justice system in Nigeria is surrounded with several challenges including long adjournment of cases, congestion, long delays in the adjudicatory process, over reliance on technicalities, collapsing infrastructure, corruption in the system, congestion in courts and prisons, poverty of knowledge, culture of impunity and declining confidence of the citizenry and efficiency of justice institutions and lots more.
Members of the Committee includes:
1. The Chief Judge of the State as the Chairman.
2. Attorney-General and Honourable Commissioner for Justice or his representative who is not below the rank of a Director.
3. A Judge of the High Court.
4. Commissioner of police.
5. Controller of Nigerian Prison Services.
6. State Coordinator of National Human Rights Commission.
7. Chairman of NBA of local branches in the state to serve for two years only.
8. State Coordinator of Legal Aid Council of Nigeria or his representative.
9. Representative of Civil Society working on human rights and access to justice or women rights to be appointed by the committee to serve for two years only.
10. Commander of the National Drugs Law Enforcement Agency or his representative not below the rank of superintendent of Narcotics.
11. A representative of the civil society on human rights and access to justice or women rights to be appointed by the Attorney General of the State to serve for two years only.