Lagos CJ To Investors: We’ll Help Recover Your Debts

The Chief Judge of Lagos State, Justice Olufunmilayo Atilade, has assured local and foreign investors in the state that the court will assist them in recovering their debts.

She stated this while inaugurating the newly-built Fast-Track Court Registry at the Igbosere Division of the state High Court.

Justice Atilade said the Lagos judiciary created the Court in 2006 to handle commercial disputes such that they would be resolved and disposed of within nine months.

Atilade pleaded with lawyers not to frustrate the objectives of the court with “incessant preliminary objections and applications for adjournments”.

This, according to her, was because the initiative was to allay the fears of investors on the ease of doing business in the country by ensuring that business disputes were resolved expeditiously without compromising the rules and standard or miscarriage of justice.

According to her, the court will handle matters related to disputes in business, revenue, mortgage and other kinds of commercial disputes.

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”This is with the view to boosting foreign investment in the economy, encourage commercial transactions, including lending and borrowing, giving them (investors) hope and assurance that the Lagos State judiciary will, where found meritorious, help hasten the recovery of debts owed in Nigeria.

”This will not only build and attract more investors into the economy, but also strengthen public confidence in the administration of justice to reinforce the true essence of the provisions of Section 36 (1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended),” she added.

The Head, Fast-Track Court, Justice A. J. Coker, praised the Chief Judge for ensuring the completion of a registry for the Fast-Track Court, which she said had been long overdue.

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Coker noted that over 4,000 cases were filed and assigned in the last one and a half years among the 10 judges posted to the division, stressing that the creation of a separate registry would boost the efficiency of the court.

The Executive Director, Human Development Initiatives, Prof. Bolaji Owasanoye, who represented the Justice-4-All team, pledged the support of organisation to the advancement  justice administration in the state.

Among other things, Owasanoye promised that J4A would assist in the training of the staff of the new registry, as well as bring back the expatriates who trained the judges to assess the level of efficiency of the court.