Group Begs JUSUN To End Strike, Decries Rights Violation
An advocacy group, Access to Justice (AJ) has pleaded with the striking judiciary workers in the country, to call off its strike embarked upon over the non-implementation of financial autonomy.
The Judiciary workers under the auspices of Judicial Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN) had embarked on indefinite strike since April 6, over the refusal of the State governors to implement full autonomy for the arm of nation’s government.
In pleading with the striking workers to call off the strike, the group said they should consider the rights of detainee, who were denied justice since the commencement of the strike.
Access to Justice, said financial dependence threatens the efficiency of the judiciary, and makes it an appendage of the executive.
The right group made the appeal in a statement jointly signed by the convener of the group, Mr. Joseph Otteh and Deji Ajare the Project Director.
Although, the group said it recognizes the need for JUSUN’s strike just as it expressed concern about the negative impact the non-implementation of the autonomy on the judiciary, but said there is need to ensure the preservation and protection of human rights.
Access to Justice expresses fears that this situation presents an open ticket for human rights violations, overcrowded cells and Public Health Risk.
It stated that “there are reports from across the country that Police cells and Custodial Centres are overcrowded, because those who have been detained since the start of the strike could not get bail as courts remained closed. This is a violation of their rights as provided in the Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015.
“As Nigeria and the World continue to battle the scourge of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is worrying that detention centres are holding more detainees than they were designed to hold, making them fertile grounds for the transmission of COVID-19”.
The group however commends the pledge by the Governors’ Forum to begin the implementation of financial autonomy for the Judiciary by May, 2021 as it promised to closely monitor their promise to ensure its fulfilment. They therefore called on JUSUN to show good faith by calling off the strike action.