The Vice President of the United Republic of Tanzania, H.E. Samia Suluhu Hassan has urged the Judiciary to be independent, accountable and effective in order to come up with a foundation of a democratic system.
She made this remark while officiating at the opening of the Commonwealth Magistrates and Judges Association Conference held in Dar es Salaam today.
H.E. Samia said that the expectations of the people to the judiciary may at times be overwhelming given the capability challenges
“Regardless of these challenges and independent, effective and accountable judiciary needs to be in place to ensure the adherence of the rule of law, equal access to justice, security of livelihoods of all and peoples’ participation in peaceful governance of their countries,” said Samia.
Vice President said that she was glad that Magistrates and Judges had taken upon themselves the leading role to ensure effective judiciary was in place by including such topics perennial complaints of our people on issues regarding to delays, financial and procedural constraints on access to justice which threaten loss of trust and confidence in Judiciary, in the program.
She further said the Government of Tanzania has played its safeguarding role by enacting the Judiciary Administration Act, 2011 which established Judiciary Fund, designed to fund the disposal of cases. Despite all those efforts, in developing countries like Tanzania, funding was not always sufficient to cover all requirements of the Judiciary, she added.
H.E. Samia said that according to Tanzania’s Vision 2025, the country is supposed to graduate from its current position as one of the Least Developed Countries, to a middle income country enjoying a high level of human development. According to the Vice President, that graduation has to be undertaken by all arms including the Judiciary, which is implementing its 2015/2016-2019-20 Strategic plan.
Meanwhile, The Chief Justice of the United Republic of Tanzania, Prof. Ibrahim Hamis Juma said that accountability, effectiveness and efficiency of the Judiciary in Tanzania has improved significantly where judicial officers were freed from day to day administrative functions.
He added that the Judiciary of Tanzania realized its vision of separation of judicial functions from purely administrative function following the enactment of the Judiciary Administrative Act, 2011.
On court buildings, the Chief Justice said in the Strategic Planning and Citizen-Centric Judiciary Modernisation and Justice Service Delivery Project funded by the World Bank, the Judiciary of Tanzania had adopted MOLADI TECHNOLOGY to fast track construction of court buildings.
“I confidently proclaim that by 2020 the Judiciary would have constructed 48 Districts courts, 100 Primary courts, 14 Resident Magistrates courts and a Judiciary Head-quarter (Judiciary Square),”said Prof. Ibrahim.
This is the Second Commonwealth Magistrates and Judges Association Conference to be held in Africa while it is the first one to take place in Tanzania. The 5 days Conference has attracted 13 Chief Justices from Commonwealth countries and dozens of Judges and Magistrates.