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Allow Us To Serve As Customary Court Judges, Traditional Rulers Beg Governor

Traditional rulers in Rivers State have called on the state government to be allowed to service as Chairmen of Customary Courts.
The Chairman of the Rivers State Traditional Rulers Council, His Majesty King (Dr.) Dandeson Douglas Jaja, requested the governor to give the traditional rulers opportunity to be serving as Judges of the Customer Courts.

Jaja, who is the Jeki V Treaty King, Amanyanabo and Natural Ruler of Opobo Kingdom, while speaking at the 113th Quarterly General Meeting of the Rivers State Council of Traditional Rulers, yesterday in Port Harcourt, noted that they are custodians of culture of the people that they should be allowed to become Judges, while Lawyers serve as Assistants.

He said: “We wish to use this opportunity to specially appeal again to Government to consider making traditional rulers judges of Customary Courts as it was when Customary Courts were first established in the Country by the colonial Government.
“Given the customary nature of issues adjudicated at the Customary Courts, traditional rulers with verse knowledge in the culture and tradition of the people can sit as judges. Lawyers can then be appointed as Special Assistants to the Judges to advise them on cases touching on fundamental human rights and jurisprudence.”

However, Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State urged the traditional rulers to work with the state government to build strong institutions in the state. Wike promised to deliver official vehicles to traditional rulers in the state from January, 2021, noting that the car gift would start from First Class traditional rulers in the state.

Wike stated that the government was looking up to the rulers for effective implementation of policies of government in the state. He said: “We look up to our traditional rulers for the effective dissemination of Government policies and progress on the one hand and face developmental challenges faced by your communityies and the attention of Government.”

By Muhammad@tarayya.ng

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