Liberia: Court Overburden!

Civil Law Court "B" Judge Schaeplor Dunbar disclosed that the Civil Law Courts in Montserrado County have huge caseloads thus pushing for the establishment of a law clerk; something he believes would help the court in speedily adjudicating cases before it.

He maintained that in order for the court to be able to dispose of cases in a timely manner, Judges presiding over these courts will need the assistance of law clerks.

"The need for the courts to have law clerks have been emphasized over and over, but we are always told that because of legal, research and assisting to prepare the first drafts of court rulings, orders and judgments are reasons for the delay," Dunbar's emphasized.

He made the disclosure on Monday, March 18, 2019 at the opening of the March 2019 Term of Court, for the 6th Judicial Circuit Court held at the grounds of the Temple of Justice in Monrovia.

Judge Dunbar further indicated that the project will assist law students by sharpening their writing and research skills noting that "the court will in turn benefit immensely from the services of these law students, as the judges will have people to assist them in speedily disposing of cases."

The project when successful; it would extend to other circuit and specialized court at the Temple of Justice and students will be paid stipends for their services as well.

Accordingly, Judge Dunbar frowns on ministerial officers over their alleged corrupt behavior in serving notice of assignments to party litigants (lawyers).

"We have received complaints from lawyers that some bailiffs are in the habit of receiving money from lawyers to serve their notices of assignment, but these bailiffs will take the money and refuse to serve the assignments. In some instance s, some bailiffs will connive with party litigants to make false returns to court precepts. This ugly behavior must stop," he explained.

He further said that while it is true the court heavily relies on ministerial officers to hear and determine cases; they will not hesitate to punish any ministerial officers caught in such ugly act adding that "Court precepts must be served in a timely manner and the returns thereto must always be correct."

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