Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai has called for the decentralisation of the judiciary to fast track justice delivery in the country.
He expressed that having a unitary judiciary in a federal state like Nigeria is an anomaly.
He made this call when the national president of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Olumide Akpata paid him a courtesy call on Tuesday, in Kaduna.
Citing an example where a high court judge handles about 250 cases, el-Rufai said the heavy case load of high court judges is hindering effective administration of justice.
“It is an anomaly to have a unitary judiciary in a federation, I am one of the major advocates of the decentralisation of our unitarist judiciary to a federal one,” El-Rufai said.
“We are pushing for the creation of state judicial councils that will handle the appointment of high court judges in states, because that is the only way that we will be able to take our fates in our hands.
“I believe that we have enough lawyers in the public and private sectors in Kaduna state to get 20 judges tomorrow if the state judicial council screens them and makes their recommendations.
“But we are constitutionally constrained as we speak.
“I have been making cases for the national judicial council to double the number of high court judges in Kaduna state, which will reduce the caseload to about 100 per judge, which is still too high.
“I am happy that the national assembly has started the process of removing the bottleneck and I urge the Nigerian Bar Association to openly support it.”