Four new judges were appointed and sworn in as The Gambia Court of Appeal and High Court judges yesterday at State House in Banjul.
Presided over by the Vice President and Minister of Women’s Affairs, Her Excellency Aja Dr. Isatou Njie-Saidy at the Cabinet Room, Oluremi Ademola Adegoke, Orifowomo Akinwale Odunwale, Abiodun Jacob Dada and Amina Saho-Ceesay took three oaths of office, secrecy and allegiance.
They swore to carry out their duties without fear or favour, affection or ill-will in accordance with the Constitution and other laws of The Gambia. They also swore not to directly or indirectly reveal such matters as maybe committed to their secrecy. The swearing-in was administered by the Cabinet Secretary, Adama Ngum-Njie.
Vice President Njie-Saidy congratulated the new judges on the appointment and their acceptance to handle their positions, assuring them of President Jammeh and the entire Government’s support at all times.
Mama Fatima Singateh, the Attorney General and Minister of Justice reminded the judges that they are appointed because they are qualified to hold the office and have gained President Jammeh’s trust.
According to her, it is not easy to preside over lives and properties, saying as adjudicators they must ensure execution of their functions professionally. “It is not an easy task but you must always comport yourselves to be there to exercise patience,” she said.
Justice Minister Singateh underscored that one of the things the Government prides itself of today is its catering for the needs of every sector in the country. “We have faith in all of you that you can deliver as expected. The legal sector is growing and expanding and requires continuous training.”
She assured the judges of Government’s support at all times, making reference to its continued investment in the legal sector.
Speaking on behalf of the new judges, Oluremi Ademola Adegoke, president of The Gambia Court of Appeal, thanked President Jammeh for appointing them, saying they would contribute to the maintenance of peace and stability that The Gambia is enjoying. “We pledge our resolve, commitment and preparedness to work as expected of us.”
Justice Adegoke also promised that they would execute their functions with dignity and diligence and they will consistently strive to improve Gambia’s jurisprudence for effective justice delivery. “We are grateful and vow to reciprocate the opportunity that President Jammeh accorded us.”
The Chief Justice of The Gambia, Emmanuel Fagbenle, reminded the judges that they have demanding task ahead of them but said with the support of President Jammeh and the entire government, they will enjoy collaborative engagement. “Our dream of expanding to all the seven regions has become possible with the support of President Jammeh,” he said.
According to him, they are working hard to fulfill President Jammeh’s commitment to bring justice to the door-steps of every Gambian, saying the backlog of cases in court has now become a thing of the past.
Chief Justice Fagbenle also promised that with the commitment of the judiciary officials, no case will now last for 24 months no matter how complex they may be. “If all of us maintain the steady cause, Gambia would be one of the best countries in the world.”
by Amadou Jallow