Access to Judicial Justice in Nigeria: The Need for Some Future Reforms

Rufai Muftau


The system of judicial justice of any country is comprised of both the civil and criminal proceedings. For effective court proceedings, various courts are created with a view to ensuring that litigants that appear before them are as much as possible feel satisfied with their decisions. How these courts are able to deliver their final judgments with a view to determining the rights of the contesting parties is always crucial in any judicial system of a country. A quick dispensation of justice with minimal delay will restore people’s confidence in the judicial system. Thus, the usual saying that judiciary is the last hope of the common man. However, a type that is characterized with delay will definitely weaken the system and so makes the people to lose hope in the entire judicial system of that country. This assertion may therefore be the truth of what is happening in Nigeria. In Nigeria, for example, it is no dispute that there have been series of complaint and public outcry on the cumbersome nature of how a litigant is to approach the court for a legal redress. This challenge is attributable to many factors ranging from delay before a case is finally determined, inbuilt constraints in the Nigerian Constitution, legal technicalities, etc. Therefore, this work is aimed at ex-raying and elaborating on some of these challenges, and many other factors that inhibit easy access to judicial justice in Nigeria. Then, recommendations will be made on how the justice sector can be better improved in the years ahead.

Key words: Justice, Court, Constitution.

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