KDSG upholds rule of law – justice commissioner says



The Kaduna State Government has continued to uphold the rule of law since Malam Nasir El-Rufai became governor, the state’s Attorney-General and Commissioner of Justice, Aisha Dikko, said on Monday in Kaduna.

Dikko was reacting to allegations that the governor was violating court processes.

The News Agency of Nigeria recalls that the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) had invited El-Rufai as one of the speakers at its Annual General Conference, but withdrew the invitation on Aug. 20.

The decision to withdraw the invitation followed a protest by some lawyers, who alleged that the governor was a serial violator of court processes, among other reasons.

Dikko explained that the Ministry of Justice issued the statement to set the records straight on the “spurious” allegations, stressing that government had demonstrated its commitment to the rule of law since 2015.

“The allegations sought to traduce the rule of law by painting ongoing judicial processes against some individuals as a violation of court processes.

“The allegations were mere efforts by the petitioners to personalise the functions of the government. As the responsible agency, the Ministry of Justice refutes the allegations.”

According to her, the cases mentioned in the NBA petition were filed by the Ministry of Justice as part of its statutory duty to enforce law and order.

“The cases have a common thread of incitement and spreading false information which cannot be tolerated in any civilised community.

“We do not have the luxury of indulging such conduct and will consistently do our duty to safeguard peaceful coexistence and uphold law and order.

“We will do this by initiating prosecutions, leaving it to the courts to decide innocence or guilt.”

She said that a government that goes to court as the proper arena for deciding cases could not be reasonably accused of not respecting the rule of law.

“Those who assert the contrary have the burden of showing how the rule of law can be advanced without the courts, and whether society is better served by permitting license, or confusing incitement with freedom of speech,” she added.

The commissioner said that Kaduna was the first state to domesticate the model Penal Code Law adopted by the 19 northern states and had passed laws for child welfare and protection, and against violence against persons.

She added that apart from domesticating the Administration of Criminal Justice Law, the state legislature had enacted close to 100 laws, most of them executive bills in the last five years.

“These include the first Mortgage and Foreclosure Law by a Nigerian sub-national, a Tax Codification Law, a Contributory Pension Law, and the Kaduna State Peace Commission Law.

“In addition, the state government has appointed more magistrates, expanded their remit and recruited more lawyers into the public service,” she said.


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