IMF Team Shower Praises on Chief Justice Babatunde Edwards
The International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) Senior Counsel in the Legal Department, Sebastiaan Pompe, has shower praises on Sierra Leone’s Chief Justice, His Lordship Justice Desmond Babatunde Edwards as he declare that he is the engineer of all the major reforms at the Judiciary.
“You are the engineer of major reforms at the Judiciary, your leadership has done impressive work,” said Sebastiaan Pompe.
The IMF team comprising the Resident Representative-Ambassador Monique NEWIAK, Senior Counsel in the Legal Department-Sebastiaan Pompe and Alice French-Financial Sector Expert in the Legal Department made their maiden visit to discuss on the “role of the Courts in economic growth and the importance of judicial independence.”
He encouraged the Judiciary’s leadership to develop a comprehensive data on all the gains recorded especially on the reforms undertaken so far.
According to him, that will help to increase public accountability and also guide donor’s intervention in terms of rendering support to the Judiciary.
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Welcoming the team, the Hon. Chief Justice Edwards outlined the successes of the Judiciary from 2019 to date. He mentioned the establishment of the first Sexual Offences Model Court in the sub-region, the first Anti-Corruption Court, the first Small Claims Court, the first Social Security Court, the first Virtual Court among host of other development undertaken.
Referencing the Anti-Corruption Court, he said “we have now had more cases completed within a short time than we ever had before, while with the Sexual Offences Model Court there is remarkable improvement in the speed with which offences involving sexual crimes are completed.”
The Hon. Chief Justice said the Judiciary needs money to be able to roll out its ambitious plans especially in the establishment of an effective and efficient case management and electronic system that will help complete its digitalization process.
He said the Judiciary has limited number of Judges but proudly stated that Magistrates are now being deployed across every District in the country for the first time.
He further assured the IMF team of the Judiciary’s independence in the execution of its constitutional duties.