By Raphael Ede
Enugu state Justice Reform Committee, which members drawn from NBA, FIDA, TAMARSAC, J4A and Customary Court of Appeal, has made a case for the establishment of a forensic laboratory in the state to aid quick dispensation of criminal cases.
Facilitator of the Committee, Mrs Justina Offiah, a one-time Commissioner for Justice and Attorney- General, who led the team on a courtesy visit to the Speaker of the House of Assembly, Hon. Edward Ubosi, said criminal cases were often delayed “because forensic lab is only located in Lagos.”
Offiah, therefore, said with the establishment of a forensic lab in Enugu, criminal cases that, hitherto, lingered in courts, would be dispensed with easily and in the process decongest police cells and prison custody.
She said part of the reasons they embarked on the visit was to intimate the Speaker about a proposed bill on Justice Reform that might soon be presented to the House for consideration.
She said the bill if passed into law would stipulate the procedure for arrest, custody and bail to be in line with the contemporary time, adding that things change as days unfolded.
“We want to make the criminal law very proactive,” she said, pointing out that at the federal level, the law had been amended.
The legal luminary expressed the view that when the reform “takes place, it will bring about remedial measures instead of being a punitive measure.”
Appreciating the team, the speaker urged them to “come any time” they needed their assistance, adding that “we will assist you in any way possible.”