Judiciary land invaders irk Principal Judge

TANZANIA: PRINCIPAL Judge Mustapher Siyani has expressed disappointment over the increasing incidents of people invading and sometimes sale land belonging to the Judiciary.

“As the judiciary was making efforts to improve service delivery to the people, it is very disappointing to note that in some areas, dishonest individuals have invaded and sold land owned by the judiciary,” he said.

He made the remarks here on Wednesday while presenting a topic on expectations of the Judicial Commission from stakeholders on delivery of justice.

Elaborating, Justice Siyani said the government was keen to ensure that each Ward in the country gets a primary court. Tanzania comprises of 3,956 Wards while the number of primary courts in the country to-date stands at 946, of which 157 courts were nonfunctioning due to various reasons, he said.

He explained that during 2023/2024 financial year, the government planned to construct about 60 new primary courts across the country, thus appealing to citizens to safeguard the infrastructures and ensure that they were not vandalised.

He called upon government organs entrusted with   investigation of criminal cases, including Prevention and Combating   of Corruption Bureau (PCCB), Police and Prisons departments to utilise Information, Communication Technology (ICT), including forensic identification technology to have positive results in case management.

Judge Siyani also warned Tanzanians to avoid being conned by bush lawyers who tarnish the good image of the judiciary. Equally, he tasked state attorneys and private advocates to take necessary efforts to identify   each other before appearing before the court.

“There is a worrying trend where unqualified lawyers known as bush lawyers have been representing unsuspecting customers in court. Apart from being a criminal offence, these shoddy characters also tarnish the good name of the judiciary in the dispensation of justice. Thus, joint efforts are needed from all stakeholders to end the vice by reporting the criminals to relevant authorities for necessary action,” he said.

Meanwhile, Chief Justice (CJ) Prof Ibrahim Juma has said ethics was a core pillar in the provision of justice, without which the fairness dispensed would be uncompleted.

He explained that stakeholders were key persons as the judiciary moves forward to implement reforms in case management.

Bukoba High Court-in-charge, Judge Immaculatha Banzi, on the other hand, commended the government for supporting the judiciary, adding that through e-filing system many cases which were pending in court had already been determined.

She, however, said most of the pending cases involved murders followed by land-related conflicts.

Chief Justice Juma and members of the Judicial Officers Ethics Committee yesterday ended their two-days tour in Kagera Region and headed to Geita Region for similar purposes.

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