REMARKS DELIVERED BY HIS EXCELLENCY, MR. AKINWUNMI AMBODE, GOVERNOR OF LAGOS STATE AT THE COMMISSIONING OF THE LAGOS STATE HIGH/MAGISTRATE COURT IN BADAGRY, ON THURSDAY, 9TH NOVEMBER, 2017.
Today, we are celebrating the expansion of the frontier of justice with the commissioning of the State High/Magistrate Court here in Badagry.
The Inauguration of this edifice of justice is a strong representation of our commitment to the rule of law and social justice, and a testimony of our determination to ensure that distance or geographical location is not a barrier to our citizens’ access to justice.
It is also a testimony to the fact that all our citizens; irrespective of whether they are resident in Badagry or Badia, Ajegunle or Agbara, Ikosi or Ikotun, Ikoyi or Ikorodu, Epe or Ejirin, Ijeshatedo or Abule-Ijesha; have equal stake in the Lagos Project and will have access to the best of public services.
Prior to this time, the entire town of Badagry including residents before the Benin Republic border all the way to Okokomaiko town and its immediate environ were served by only 2 court rooms; one for the High Court and the other, for the Magistrates. This was grossly inadequate.
Besides, the Badagry axis is fast evolving as a major economic hub in the State with vast potentials especially in tourism. The ongoing transformation of Badagry through infrastructural renewal and development are meant to open up these parts to investors who will take advantage of the multi-million oil exploration activity and the Deep Sea port project among others.
As the prospects of prosperity begin to manifest, Badagry will continue to experience influx of people who will engage in different types of economic activities as well as making it a place of residence. The resultant increase in social and economic activities will naturally lead to a corresponding increase in disputes which would require an efficient justice system to resolve, as quickly as possible.
As we celebrate the golden anniversary of the “Centre of Excellence, it is auspicious that we signpost our commitment to social development and improvement on the dispensation of justice and maintenance of law and order with the commissioning of a 6-Court Room Complex in this beautiful and serene town of Badagry.
It is our firm belief that a functional, responsive and dynamic judicial system constitutes an indispensable component of good governance. This newly constructed court has been equipped with modern facilities for the comfort of not only Judges and Magistrates but also everyone including lawyers and members of the public.
The Court has been designed to ensure the welfare and security of all personnel and members of the public who have cause to be in the Chambers of Justice with the installation of CCTV surveillance cameras and monitors within the various courtrooms and the entire vicinity of the complex. There is a well-equipped library, exhibit room and conference room facilities for the continued training and re-training of justice personnel assigned to the complex.This facility is also equipped with administrative offices that would service the 6-courtrooms and also accommodate the Office of Public Defender (OPD) which will continue to provide legal services and advice to the vulnerable.
As we strive to provide a conducive atmosphere for our Judges and Magistrates to effectively discharge their sacred duties, we will also give due consideration to reducing the work load by increasing the number of judges and magistrates in the State. This will also be complemented by expanding the window of opportunity for Alternative Dispute Resolution.
I congratulate Her lordship, Justice Opeyemi Oke as this Court is being delivered to the Judicial arm on the heels of her appointment and inauguration as the Chief Judge of Lagos State.
It is my hope and prayer that this facility will endure as a true temple of justice and beacon of hope for all men and women who seek refuge, protection and comfort under the rule of law.
Thank you and God bless you all.
Itesiwaju Ipinle Eko, lo je walogun!!!
Governor of Lagos State,
9th November, 2017.