The Kwara State Commissioner for Justice, Barrister Salman Jawondo, SAN, has called for reconsideration and review of obsolete presumption of innocence of defendants with respect to some crimes threatening the corporate existence of Nigerians and their right to live in peace.
He made the call at the commencement of the 2021/2022 new legal year, valedictory court session for retiring judges, presentation of newly appointed Kwara state high court judges and unveiling of the new high court procedure rules in Ilorin on Monday.
Jawondo, who condemned the menace of kidnapping for ransom in the country, described the crime as a veritable source through which state funds are siphoned under the pretext that the demands of the kidnappers must be met to save the lives of the kidnap victims.
“The wake of insecurity in our country is more than a challenge, as no one can sleep with the two eyes closed.
“The phenomenon of kidnapping for ransom has transmuted into a lucrative venture sustained by hoodlums with active connivance of unscrupulous persons.”
The Justice Commissioner, said the judiciary, as the last hope of the common man, needs to be more on its toes to save Nigerians from the menace now eating deep into our flesh.
He charged judges in the state to keep abreast of time and be conversant with the technological developments in the judicial process, saying ” virtual proceedings are gradually becoming the norm and included in the various rules of courts.
Congratulating the new judges, Jawondo said the position of a judge is highly revered, coveted and respected in the sight of God and man, urging them to be good judges as they would be judged by people and God as they judge the people.
In his speech, the Chief Judge of the state, Justice Durosylorun Suleiman Kawu, called for enactment of the judiciary autonomy law in the state.
Also speaking, a legal icon, Malam Yusuf Ola-Olu Ali, SAN, urged law enforcement agencies to do more in the fight against crime to save lives and property.