The Rivers State Government on Monday inaugurated family court for effective and speedy delivery of justice in cases involving abuse of rights of children in the state.
The Chief Judge of Rivers State, Justice Simeon Amadi in his speech, said “children are the future leaders and all issues against them need to be addressed specifically and tackled expeditiously so as not to jeopardize their future and enveriably the future of the coming generation”.
“The objective of the child justice system is that it focuses on best interest of the child which is the fulcrum of the family court system.
“The family court focuses on ensuring proper atmosphere in child justice administration by reducing the tension associated with the regular court rooms and court procedures and by this, tackle the problem of child victim stigmatization.
“Let me use this opportunity to warn all legal practitioners who will be appearing before the family court to desist from unprofessional and unethical attitudes that they exhibit in regular court which result in unnecessary adjournment of cases thereby forcing delay in speedy despensation of justice”.
Meanwhile the presiding Judge of the family court, Justice Suzette Eberechi Wike said “the essence of child family justice is to re-orientate, rehabilitate and re-intergrate,bring relief and redress to the the child not to inflict corporal punishment or hardship on the child no matter the deliquensce.
“I want to assure everyone that the Rivers State family court will robustly apply and enforce every relevant international, national and local legal instrument in discharging its respinsibility to protect and advance the best interest of our children in Rivers State.
“The family court functions in PortHarcourt with four jusrisdiction,two high Court Judges and two Magistrates.It is expected to spread to all the LGAs to ease access to justice, across the state as the need arises and resources allowed.
“The court will be age appropriate,speedly and deligent .It will focus on the child’s needs.Respect the right to due process and the right to private and family life.
“It is accessible to all, including lawyers, litigants,and non lawyers will have the right to participate .
“The book unveiled is the child, ethics and law.The book dwells on topic like the rights and responsibility of children,the duties of family and societies other institution, Government to the child and the duty of the child to these entities.
“Also child abuse and what to do when the child’s rights is abused
“Under the system the court is oblige to listen to children,consider their views and ensure their participation and protection in the process whether as victims, witnesses or alleged offenders .
While inaugurating the family court,the Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike admonished the handlers not to be emotional in process of justice delivery.