General News of Friday, 16 November 2018
The Judicial Service of Ghana has held a forum on Electronic Justice (E-Justice) for some selected Journalists in Accra.
The E-Justice, also known as Paperless Courts, formed part of Government of Ghana’s E-Transformation programme, which seeks to automate the existing manual filing systems within Courts Registries.
Under the project, court users could sit in their homes and offices and file their court processes within 30 minutes. Users could also file their concerns relating to cases on the E-Justice Portal.
The project sponsored by the World Bank through the Ministry of Communication has Messer EOH, a South African Firm as the solution provider with an American Company, Messer Leading Associates, playing the supervisory role.
Speaking at the forum, Mr Justice Samuel Marful-Sau, a Supreme Court Judge, noted that, the automation had been operational in the various courts over the years but registries were still using the manual system, hence the need to synchronise the work of the courts and their registries.
Justice Marful-Sau recalled how some old dusty dockets and files affect the health of judges when they read through them.
With the E-Justice project, the Supreme Court Judge said bulky appeals could be stored on pen drives for judges to read.
According to him, although people ought to pay for exhibits to the court coffers, these were not done, adding that, under the E-Justice project, payments of exhibits would be effected to generate more revenue.
The Supreme Court Judge said no investor would like to invest in a country where it took the country’s Judiciary 15 years to resolve a dispute, hence the introduction of the E-Justice project.
He said the E-Justice would assist the judiciary to do away with fraudulent activities as well as delays in court processes.
Mr Robert Cudjoe, Director of Information Communication Technology (ICT), Judicial Service, said the service had started the E-Project at the various High Courts at the Court Complex in Accra and very soon it would be extended to the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court.
Mr Cudjoe explained that all external users could access the E-Justice portal by registering as a user through the link on https://www.judicial.gov.gh or by using https://www.ejustice.jsg.gov.gh
According to Mr Cudjoe, access to the E-Justice portal required no cost but one was required to submit a valid national Identity and provide full name, physical address, mobile number, e-mail address, solicitor’s and chamber license.
He said users could have their documents filed within 30 minutes and assured the public that the portal had also been secured.
Mr Cudjoe said under the E-Justice project, notification of any payments would be sent to users through their mobile phones.
Justice Ellen Amoah, a High Court Judge whose court had been used for the E-Justice pilot project, recounted that, the project did not only reduce stress but also ensured accountability and transparency.
Mrs Patricia Naa Afarley Dadson, Manager of the Court Complex said the 295 staff housed at the complex were ready for the implementation of the project.
The E-Justice Portal was later demonstrated to the Journalists.