National Assembly {Upper Chamber) in session
By Laleye Dipo in Minna
The Niger State government has said that it has completed arrangements for the domestication of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act.
The Act was passed by the National Assembly in May 2015 and has been assented to by President Muhammadu Buhari.
The state Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Nasara Danmalam, disclosed this in Minna on Tuesdaywhile speaking at the opening of a one-day workshop with the theme: “Enabling Capacity and Implementation of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act,” organised by the state branch of the International Federation of Women Lawyers.
Danmalam said the draft of the domesticated Act would soon be presented to the state executive council for approval after which it would be transmitted to the state House of Assembly for passage.
The attorney general also said that the ministry had “gone very far in the reform of the justice system in the state”, adding that the reform was to make justice administration very smooth and less cumbersome.
He further explained that the ministry had completed arrangement for the establishment of special courts to try accused persons, disclosing also that the first of such courts would begin sitting in Kontagora “very soon” where not less than 75 suspects would be tried for rape and homicide.
Speaking in a similar vein, the Chairperson of FIDA in the state, Hajia Maryam Jibo, said domestication of the Administration of the Criminal Justice Act by all states in the country would “enhance the applicability of the Act in areas that concern women and children especially in such areas like rape, kidnapping, human trafficking and forced labour whereby the victims mostly suffer injustice and human degradation”.
Hajia Jibo said: “The promulgation of this Act is a welcome development as it provides a leeway for the Nigerian citizens in the protection of their rights while facing criminal investigation and trials.”
A private legal practitioner, Malam Adamu Umar Aliyu, in a paper however suggested that the admissibility of video evidences contained in the Act should be critically examined in view of the possibility of doctoring such video tapes.
Aliyu drew example from the recent incident involving the Inspector General of Police (IG), saying a similar incident had affected former Presidents Barack Obama of US and Jacob Zuma of South Africa.