Samia urges timely justice 

PRESIDENT Samia Suluhu Hassan has stressed the importance of timely dispensation of justice through arbitration of disputes in order to preserve the prevailing peace as well as attract investments and saving costs incurred through lengthy court procedures.

Dr Samia made the remarks in Dodoma on Wednesday, while gracing the Law Day celebration at Chinangali Park in the capital city of Dodoma.

The theme for the day was; “The importance of conflict resolution through arbitration for sustainable economic growth: The responsibility of the judiciary and its stakeholders.”

“Timely dispensation of justice through arbitration rather than the long court procedures will create confidence among the citizens and investors. Justice denied is justice delayed and thus we should focus on arbitration,” Dr Samia declared.

The Head of State pointed to the fact that the government has opened up the country for investment and trade in the region and beyond and thus investors need to be assured of protection of their investments.

“Long procedures in solving disputes are not healthy for the country and they scare away investors,” she insisted.

She, thus, urged responsible institutions engaged in dispensation of justice to ensure they amend their regulations to allow smooth implementation of arbitration of disputes.

“The courts of law should not be the first option in solving cases. Arbitration takes less time and at law costs,” she pointed.

President Samia used the occasion to direct the Ministry of Constitutional and Legal Affairs and the Ministry of Finance and Planning to work together with other stakeholders to amend laws and regulations, which are hindrance to arbitration of disputes.

Dr Samia revealed that it was due to the government’s resolve to ensure timely justice that she formed the presidential commission to assess performance of all institutions engaged in law enforcement and dispensation of justice.

“The presidential commission will assess performance of the institutions for four months and thereafter, propose measures to improve their performance in order to ensure timely and justly dispensation of justice,” she declared.

The institutions include the Judiciary Tanzania Police Force, National Prosecution Services (NPS), Prevention and Combating of Corruption Bureau (PCCB), Tanzania Prisons Service and Drug Control and Enforcement Authority (DCEA).

On the other hand, Dr Samia hailed the judiciary for implementing its strategic plan of 2015 by undertaking various measures to improve its efficiency through use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in its activities.

She mentioned another success registered by the judiciary as construction of new court buildings in many parts as part of efforts to bring justice dispensation closer to the people.

Through such improvements, the courts of law managed to solve and issue judgements on 253,293 cases out of 304,293 cases which were registered last year, she noted.

Dr Samia was equally impressed that the arbitration centre was able to mediate over 64 out of 354 disputes, which were registered last year, while seven disputes are at various stages of arbitration.

The Head of State pledged to improve welfare of employees and also address shortages of workers in the judiciary in order to improve efficiency.

She also directed the leadership of the judiciary to take disciplinary actions against unethical employees who engage in acts such as soliciting bribes from the people and thus hinder justice dispensation.

Dr Samia also urged the judiciary to ensure the court buildings being constructed in different parts of the country meet value for money standards.

“You should also ensure that all court buildings, its equipment and ICT systems are well preserved so that they can last long and serve many people,” she urged.

The commemoration of the Law Day yesterday was preceded by Law Week which was graded by the Vice-President, Dr Philip Mpango, on January 22, this year at Nyerere Square grounds in Dodoma.

President Samia hailed the judiciary for creating public awareness to members of the public and engaging various stakeholders during the Law Week.

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