Tanzania: Judiciary Succeeds in Trimming Number of Cases

THE Judiciary in Tanzania has managed to cut down the number of cases, thanks to a special schedule that indicates limited time for hearing and giving judgment to cases.

Minister for Constitution and Legal Affairs, Dr Augustine Mahiga told the parliament that the court has been applying various strategies to address the problem of delaying cases.

He said so far the application of special system for hearing cases has helped in resolving the problem and providing justice on time.

The minister was responding to a question by Mgogoni MP, Dr Suleiman Ally Yussuf (CUF), who wanted to know why the court does not follow its own schedule and procedures in hearing cases.

He said the court of Tanzania set procedures for hearing and giving judgment to cases on a given time, adding that the high court and court of appeal are supposed to give judgment within two years after the commencement of a case, one year for a resident court and six months for primary courts.

However, the MP said the situation has been different and wanted to know the reasons behind the delay.

In response, the minister said the court of Tanzania has been doing everything in its capacity to address the problem, and that so far it was on the right track.

He gave the reasons for the delay of some cases as the small number of judges and magistrates compared to the number of cases that are filed from time to time.

He added that another reason includes delay of submitting criminal investigation report from the police and other departments and continuous adjournment of cases that are caused by the accused and accusers.

"The court is facing many challenges, including adjournment of cases from time to time due to problems that are caused by those who are involved in the case," he said.

The Minister said President John Magufuli had already warned on the delay of cases, and that the court is doing everything in its capacity to solve the problem.

Moreover, Principal Judge, Eliezer Felesh told District and Residents magistrates not to receive criminal cases which are still under investigation.

He said the implementation of the directives will speed up the hearing of cases and ensure justice among the people.

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