Head of AU Mission Commends Judiciary’s Preparedness to Handle Electoral Offences

Former Prime Minister of Ethiopia, who doubles as Head of the African Union Mission, His Excellency Hailemariam Dessalegn, has on the 22nd June, 2023, expressed sentiments of  his impression on the leadership provided by Sierra Leone’s Chief Justice, His Lordship Justice Desmond Babatunde Edwards to make the Judiciary an envy in the sub-region.

Regarding the Judiciary’s preparedness to handle elections offences and petitions, the Head of AU Mission said, “it is clearly visible that there is adequate preparedness, and thank you for that.”

While commending the Chief Justice’s impressive and compelling presentation on the Judiciary’s preparedness to promote Electoral Justice, His Excellency Hailemariam Dessalegn said, “Thank you so much my Lord Chief Justice for the excellent briefing given on the preparedness of the justice system to handle petitions and offences related to the 2023 elections.”

On his part, the Hon. Chief Justice, His Lordship Justice Desmond Babatunde Edwards, said the Judiciary believes in the supremacy of the Rule of Law and access to timely justice for all players in the electioneering process.

Highlighting his institution’s preparedness, Hon. Chief Justice Edwards said they have developed an Electoral Justice training manual that guided the training of all Judges to deal with cases at the Elections Offences and Petitions Court.

“I have assigned 26 Judges to preside over cases at the Elections Offences and Petitions Court across the country,” he disclosed, adding that “We have also established independent Registries” where cases are filed at the specialized Electoral Court while regular Court sittings will be ongoing uninterrupted.

“We have the capacity, and we are now prepared,” he affirmed.


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