-Associate Justice Wolokollie Reveals
By R Joyclyn Wea
Cllr. Jamesetta Wolokollie, an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of Liberia has alleged that it takes six months for trial judges to hear or make determination on a case, something she said needs to be changed.
Associate Justice Jamesetta Wolokollie
According to Justice Wolokollie, there have been no improvement in the judiciary system dispite help from partners, international communities, as well as the National Association of Trial Judges of Liberia established to look at shortcomings of members of that association.
Justice Wolokollie made the allegation Tuesday during the opening of the May term of Court at the Temple of Justice.
She mentioned that taking six months to hear a single case should not be and that it contravenes the law.
Article 20(b) of the Liberian Constitution gives judges the right to interpret the law “without sale, denial or delay.”
Some legal minds asserted that this action of judges is one of the contributing factors for the over crowdedness of court docket and the slow pace of accessing justice in Liberia.
The Associate Justice emphasized that the judiciary had not improved or reached the stage they wanted because trial judges and court actors had not played their role very well saying “the professional is not a white Cadel job or where people come to make fun; you should come to the profession because you have passion for it and know that you are dealing with the rights of people.
Justice Wolokollie stressed further judges have not played their role properly in the way that would make the judiciary effective saying “don’t tell me you do not have eyes to see, why this is happening. Matters before you need to be proceeded with correctly; when your hands are tie you can bring it to your other colleagues.”
During the ceremony, the issue of judges salary was raised but Justice Wolokollie stated that judges performance would determine their paid noting they must have a merit system.
She argued further that salary of judges cannot increase into the absence of improvement.