Judiciary radical changes will now expedite the legal system

22Jul 2016
The Guardian
Judiciary radical changes will now expedite the legal system

THE judiciary system in the country is undergoing radical changes in readiness to deal with corruption cases. It is open secret that corruption remains one the serious vices in the country.

It has been revealed that about eleven per cent of Tanzanians interviewed in a recent survey had either received or given bribes.

Fighting corruption should be a joint effort by all members of the society which cannot be left to the government alone. It is therefore necessary to engage the Prevention and Combating of Corruption Bureau (PCCB) in stepping up the fight.

We told that other changes in the judicial system include faster release of copies of case rulings within three days. As the cardinal rule states ‘justice delayed Is justice denied’. This was stated by William E. Gladstone who was a British statesman and the Prime Minister 1868-1894 .

It is a legal maxim meaning that if legal redress is available for a party that has suffered some injury, but is not forthcoming in a timely fashion, it is effectively the same as having no redress at all.

This principle is the basis for the right to a speedy trial and similar rights which are meant to expedite the legal system, because it is unfair for the injured party to have to sustain the injury with little hope for resolution.

The phrase has become a rallying cry for legal reformers who view courts or governments as acting too slowly in resolving legal issues either because the existing system is too complex or overburdened, or because the issue or party in question lacks political favour.

During a meeting that involved judiciary workers and other stakeholders the government said the plan was to increase good governance, accountability, timely provision of rights and building public trust in the Tanzanian courts.

“ We are dedicated to transform operations of the judiciary system where we want to see case rulings ready within three days,” Chief Registrar of the Judiciary said.

We are also told that in the new system, there will be away to evaluate performance of magistrates and judges to inspect how they make rulings in order to avoid cases where they wrongly decide on case.

At the same time, the system will also look into it that people with special needs get first priority when they seek services at the courts.

Reforms at the judiciary started at high pace in 2012 during judges meeting in Arusha where they agreed to evaluate their own performances, starting by the number of cases they handle.

During the meeting, both judges and magistrates vowed to ensure fast tracking of cases, adding, “the judiciary leadership came up with action plan involving other stakeholders to avoid a situation whereby we could meet challenges at the implementation stage”.

It is now important that every region should be ready to receive and implement the new plan and all judiciary staff will have a score card for self evaluation where those who fail to meet the required target shall be dealt with.

Top Stories