Lagos commits to speedy administration of justice, prosecutes 1,536 criminal cases
In renewed demonstration of its commitment to speedy administration of justice, the Lagos State Government on Friday said it prosecuted a total of 1, 536 criminal cases in all courts in the last one year through the Directorate of Public Prosecution (DPP).
The State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Adeniji Kazeem who disclosed this during the ongoing ministerial press briefing to herald the one year anniversary of the Governor Akinwunmi Ambode administration, said that out of the total number of cases being prosecuted, judgments were delivered in 15 of the matters being handled by the Directorate.
He said out of the 1,536 cases, 1,375 cases are currently being prosecuted at the Federal and State High Courts as well as 122 and 38 respectively at the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court.
Kazeem said that in addition to the 1,536 active criminal prosecution files, the DPP’s office was also handling 137 applications for enforcement of Fundamental Rights. “With regards to criminal prosecutions, our Directorate of Public Prosecutions is committed to ensuring that all offenders are brought to book, thereby discouraging impunity in our society. The Directorate is also committed to speedy trails, especially so that suspects are not detained for too long awaiting trial.
“The truism ‘justice delayed is justice denied’ is one of our guiding principles, especially in criminal justice administration. Both the victims of a crime and the alleged offender deserve to have their case resolved at the earliest possible time,” he said. He said the Legal Advisory Unit, which focuses exclusively on the review of criminal case files, containing reports of investigation submitted by the Police and issuance of legal advice, has been able to hasten considerably the speed of criminal prosecutions by reducing the time spent on issuing legal advice.
“In the period under review, out of 1,209 police investigation files sent to the DPP’s office for legal advice, the Unit has already completed work on 940 while the rest are still being processed, many requiring additional information or further investigation by the Police or other relevant agency,” the Commissioner said. Kazeem said the government has always taken the lead in legislation and law reform initiatives just as he assured of the present administration’s commitment to continue ensuring that every citizens of Lagos State has access to justice.
He said the State Government in order to ensure that its laws are kept updated and readily accessible to the general public, has completed a new compilation of the Lagos Laws, which includes all amendment and additions.
He said, “In line with the direction of the Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, the 2015 Revised Laws of Lagos State are now accessible online to the general public, which provides access to all the Laws that have operated in the state since inception in 1967”.
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