The Judicial Service of Ghana has commissioned a magistrate court complex for the Nadowli-Kaleo District to help bring justice delivery to the doorsteps of the people.
The facility, which comprised a courtroom, secretariat, and accommodation for the magistrate, was funded by the District Assembly as part of its mandate of making key social services readily available to the people.
Speaking at a ceremony at Nadowli to commission the facility, Mr Justice Alhaji Yussif Asibey, the Supervising High Court Judge of Wa, who represented Justice Kwasi Anin-Yeboah, the Chief Justice, noted that distance should not be a hindrance to accessing justice.
“The court will have Juvenile and Family Tribunals where matters involving Juvenile, marital and maintenance issues could be settled,” he said.
Justice Asibey indicated that there would also be an Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) system to offer a timely and cost-effective settlement of cases to aggrieved people rather than going through the traditional court process.
“Where appropriate and applicable, cases could be withdrawn from the Court for an amicable settlement.
“The terms of settlement filed by the parties could be adopted by the Court as their Consent Judgment”, he added and encouraged the people to opt for ADR when necessary.
Justice Asibey said the Jirapa Magistrate Court Judge, Mr Baba Issahaku Iddi, would play a supervisory role over the Nadowli-Kaleo Magistrate Court until a substantive Judge for the new court was appointed.
Dr Hafiz Bin Salih, the Upper West Regional Minister, commended the Nadowli-District Assembly for living up to its responsibility by providing a decent and safe environment for justice delivery in the district.
He also urged His Worship Baba Issahaku Iddi, to deliver justice with all the integrity and alacrity required as he had done in the past.
“I want to use this opportunity to appeal to the magistrate that I expect the highest form of professionalism in the discharge of their duties. DO not engage in any activities that will disrepute the admiration of justice.
“You will not be spared if you are caught in any act of misconduct. I also want to encourage you to be firm but fair and to treat all people you come across in the discharge of your duties with the utmost respect”, he said.
On her part, Madam Katherine T. Lankono, the Nadowli-Kaleo District Chief Executive (DCE), said the people of the district, hitherto, traveled to Jirapa or Wa to seek justice.
He, however, said the distance and the cost of traveling discouraged many people in the district from seeking the needed justice and expressed hope that the availability of the court in the district would help ameliorate their challenges in that regard.
“We want to see expedited but not compromised justice delivery service rendered, when the Nadowli Court becomes operational.
“This will go a long way to change the public perception about the justice delivery system in the country”, she appealed.
Madam Lankono assured the Judicial Service that the District Security Committee (DISEC) would provide the needed security to the staff at the court in the discharge of their duties.