Obinna Chima
The immediate past Chief Justice of Ghana and the 2017-2018 Africa Initiative for Governance (AIG) Visiting Fellow of Practice at the Blavatnik School of Government, University of Oxford, Justice Georgina Wood (rtd) has stressed the importance of adherence to the rule of law in any society.

Wood said this recently when she delivered the AIG public lecture titled: “Rule of Law, the Promotion of Sustainable Development and Ghana’s Experience: A View from the Bench,” at the Blavatnik School of Government, University of Oxford.

The lecture is an integral part of her AIG Fellowship stay at the School.
In October 2017, the AIG had announced the appointment of Justice Wood as the 2017-2018 AIG Fellow in recognition of her contribution to public service in Ghana.

 The AIG Fellowship is awarded each year to an individual from West Africa who has demonstrated evidence of outstanding contribution to the public good, through exemplary leadership in public service.
“One key lesson I have learnt is that the imperatives of promoting a Rule of Law based governance system, anchored on a free, fair and impartial administration of justice cannot be overemphasised,” a statement quoted Justice Wood to have said during her lecture.

She added: “The moderating influence of the Judiciary on the more political branches is the basis of constitutional stability and balance, providing the needed conducive environment for sound economic growth and a better life for all.
“The Judiciary must be accorded the same respect and resources and strengthened to enable it perform its functions.”

 On his part, the Dean of the Blavatnik School of Government, Prof. Ngaire Woods, said: “We are honoured to host Justice Wood at the Blavatnik School.
“We are grateful to her for sharing her outstanding experience of the Justice System in Ghana with our students and faculty.”

The AIG Fellowship is part of a five-year partnership established in 2016 between AIG and the Blavatnik School.
In 2016, AIG and the Blavatnik School of Government also announced Prof. Attahiru Jega, former Executive Chairman of Nigeria’s Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as the inaugural AIG Fellow.

In addition to the AIG Fellowships, five scholarships are made available by AIG every year to talented, young West Africans from all backgrounds, who are passionate about the public sector, to pursue the Master of Public Policy at the Blavatnik School of Government.

The founder and Chairman, AIG, Mr. Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede said he was pleased to have Justice Wood as the AIG Fellow for 2017/2018.
He added: “AIG’s vision is to be a catalyst for the emergence of a high-performing public sector in Africa and we remain committed to the actualisation of this goal, for the benefit of our continent.”

During their time at the Blavatnik School of Government, AIG Fellows have the opportunity to further develop their understanding of specific policy issues and solutions and to reflect on practices in other countries, with a view to returning to their country and helping to build competency and leadership capacity within the public sector, promoting the virtues of good public service and making the public sector attractive to the brightest minds. AIG Fellows will also serve as mentors to AIG scholars.