18 June 2017

Ethiopia: A Strong Justice System for a Strong Economy


The Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia is made up of a federal government and state governments. Both the federal government and state governments have a legislative, executive and judiciary organs. The federal house of peoples representatives is the top power house of the country. It is accountable to citizens it represents. The states are set up either by state governments or administrative layers as per the tangible situation of their respective states. State governments serve as chief executives. Their judiciary power resides in courts. For ages people that were deprived of the right to enjoy this fortune were sweltering under injustice.

Though it was starting from the era of emperors injustice was towering in Ethiopia, the overarching cause of the injustice was the power that never knew devolution. In cognizance of this fact, the incumbent has brought into play a new constitution key in addressing the problem.

Citizens are entitled such right based on structural set ups. Nonetheless, there are some gaps in the justice system. A rent-seeking mind bent and lack of devotion in properly serving citizens are creating hurdles. Also sluggishness in delivering services is also among the bottlenecks that conspire to abort the effectiveness of the justice system. Hearing complaints of service seekers that "We shall grease the palms of judges with oil and deal with brokers that pledges vain promises as the saying goes a pie on the sky has become uncommon to hear. The time the police require in hunting for evidences after detaining suspects and the protracted justice delivery are exhausting the patience of service seekers making them indignant. To get a solution a case may take a couple of years. Criminal cases do not get a quick solution, cases that got a solution at times often prove highly dubious. If some judges and prosecutors at times conspire it will not be difficult to assume what will be the consequence.

If law students who vowed to properly serve citizens forget their pledge they made up on graduation it will be hard for the country to actualize the multifaceted developmental push it has made a point. Recently, Prime Minster Hailemariam Dessalgen had noted that a lot of reforms were designed a year ago to straighten knotty issues in the justice system. Accordingly, a lot of rectifying measures were taken.

Enumerating the tasks accomplished in taking the justice system to new heights he mentioned the state-of-the-art data handling technique courts adopted, the opening of courts in key spots, the training given to professionals in the field, the possibility of transferring professionals from place to place, the joining hands of police and prosecutors. He as well listed the strengthening of the concerted effort being deployed and the growing tendency of public participation in the justice system as tasks that require added attention.

He criticized the obsolete nature of Police's evidence gathering detaining suspects, saying in court rooms we need extra evidence as well as creating discomforts and hassles on detainees. He as well condemned adjourning cases having the necessary evidences. The justice system must be allowed to evolve bridging gaps in terms of structural and administrative set ups,skilled manpower and implementation. It as well must metamorphosis in such a way it copes up with modern criminal trends. In order to combat crime an all out move is imperative.

It goes without saying that the growing economy is likely to make relations intricate. Hence, an economic system that shoulders the demand for an immaculate justice system is mandatory. The development-oriented push will surge ahead unrestrained, if the justice system is a quality and transparent one that outreaches all.


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