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I’ve Fulfilled All My Promises To Judiciary – Gov. Wike

Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has expressed his satisfaction with his administration’s relentless efforts to enhance the judiciary so that it can fulfill its constitutional mandate.

Wike expressed his fulfillment while speaking at the 2022/23 Legal Year opening ceremony, held in Port Harcourt on Wednesday, 23rd November 2022, he said all promises his administration made concerning the judiciary had been fulfilled in impressive achievements beyond the imaginations of many.

The governor noted that on assumption of office in 2015, “The state High Court had no Chief Judge, leadership, or direction for nearly two years. The governor then attempted to impose a Chief Judge on the state outside the due process. When this devious attempt was resisted, he instigated a phantom crisis and closed down the state courts until he left office.”

“We knew that the ensuing social and economic anarchy would ruin Rivers State without functional courts to uphold and defend the rule of law.  Beyond the crisis, we also inherited a judiciary neglected to the hilt, dilapidated and inadequate courthouses, and unpaid salary arrears.”

“Our first task was to revive the judiciary and ensure the speedy administration of justice. Without wasting time, we appointed the first female Chief Judge for the state, reopened the courts, and restored judicial services from our first day in office.”

He said that during his administration’s first year in office, judges received new Special Utility Vehicles as official cars, which have been replaced since 2019. His administration also started renovating the current courthouses and building new ones for the state High Court.

Wike said prior to his administration, judges in the state were faced with the challenge of lack of a retirement home, his government considered it morally wrong for the state to evict judges from their official quarters and force them to rented apartments after they retired from service.

“We then enacted the Judicial Officers Housing Scheme Law and took over the responsibility of providing life-long residences for Rivers State judges, including those serving in federal jurisdictions.”

“We have since implemented this law by providing 4-bedroom duplexes with appurtenances, including security and regular electricity at the Chinwe Aguma judicial estate, to our judges. Similarly, those who opted not to reside in the estate were given an equivalent monetary value to build or buy similar houses.”

The governor announced that his administration was building a brand-new, ultra-modern magistrates’ court complex to replace all of the magistrate courts currently housed on the grounds of the state High Court complex in order to strengthen the legal system even more.

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