By Abasi Ita, Calabar
Governor Bassey Otu of Cross River has assured the state judiciary of an improved welfare package and adequate funding to guarantee regular capacity-building programmes to ensure optimum performance.
Governor Otu gave the assurance on Wednesday when he received in audience the executives of the State chapter of the Magistrates Association of Nigeria (MAN) in his office in Calabar.
Otu acknowledged the plight of the judiciary in the state,stressing that adequate welfare, and regular training of judicial officers as enabling factors for prompt dispensation of justice would be accorded utmost priority by his administration.
He said; ” Government is committed to addressing the manpower and logistics deficits in the third tier of government in order to reposition our judicial system for effective performance”
According to Otu; “We can not talk of the quick dispensation of justice when the working environment, capacity building, and welfare of staff are not properly addressed. I want to pledge the support of my administration towards capacity building of judicial officers given its pivotal role in ensuring effective justice delivery”
He assured the state chapter of the Magistrates Association of Nigeria of his readiness for robust partnership for the good of the citizenry given the importance of the third tier of government in the society.
On welfare, Governor Otu said, “Your work is very sensitive in the judiciary. Without you, the government would not hold. I know the peculiarities of some of the issues bothering Magistrates in the State. Those issues would not be addressed in one day; but with continuous interaction, things would be sorted out.”
He called for sacrifices from the Magistrates towards the attainment of set goals, revealing that his administration would set up a Committee to look into all matters of welfare, infrastructural interventions, as well as promotion of Magistrates, amongst others with the view to addressing all issues militating against the smooth operations of magistracy in the State.
Speaking earlier, the Chairman, of the Cross River chapter of the Magistrates Association of Nigeria, His Worship, Godwin Onah, congratulated the governor on his victory at the polls and the Appeal Court verdict re-validating his election.
Onah, expressed optimism in Governor Otu’s ability to deliver, noting that the transformational and people-oriented policies of the present administration are already impacting positively on the people.
He disclosed that the visit was prompted by the need to acquaint the governor with some teething issues bothering magistracy and the Association in the state.
He highlighted their included: welfare, revitalization of infrastructure, capacity building for judicial officers, due process in promotions, and upward review of emoluments, among oth