Gov.Simon Lalong of Plateau has congratulated the first female President of the Customary Court of Appeal in the state, Justice Julia Kyentu, on her retirement from public service.
Lalong during the special valedictory court session held for Justice Kyentu on Friday at High Court in Jos, described her as an Amazon in the legal profession.
“For those who know Justice Julie Kyentu either within or outside the courtroom, the experiences may vary, but the testimony of her integrity, hard work, intellectual capacity and judicial depth is the same,” he said.
He commended Kyentu for not only demonstrating deep knowledge of the law and its application to the dispensation of justice, but also for showing courage to administer justice without fear or favour, affection or ill will.
The governor said the attributes of Kyentu and her impartiality in the administration of Justice had led to her retirement without blemish.
“As a woman, Justice Kyentu is on the roll call of distinguished Plateau daughters, who have broken the ceiling to establish the fact that women are more than capable of performing any function in the society if given the opportunity.
He, then, announced that he was working toward the completion of new Plateau High Court complex and the improvement of other courts.
He urged other judges to sustain her legacy of fairness, incorruptibility, hard work and patriotism, saying both members of the bar and bench must do everything possible to safeguard the integrity of the Judiciary.
Lalong said the judiciary was not only the hope of the common man, but the hope of democracy, good governance and societal development especially in the political dispensation where there was pressure to interpret the law as it is and set the standards for orderly conduct in society.
He assured the judiciary of continuous support and efforts at deepening reforms in the judiciary to make it more effective.
“We must take our judiciary to the level where it operates based on the use of information and communication technology that governs transactions in the world today. This will reduce delays in trials and also reduce work load on Judges,” he said.
Earlier in his remarks, the Chief Judge of Plateau, Yakubu Dakwak ,congratulated Justice Kyentu for successful retirement from service against all odds in the system.
He revered Kyentu for her intellectual handling of judicial matters while wishing her a peaceful retirement.
“Please do not shy away of being called for patriotic service in the judiciary or legislative in Plateau or the nation,” he said.
Responding, the retiring president thanked God for the privilege of not only being the first president of the customary court of appeal in Plateau, but also being the first female Judge and first female head of court in the state.
She thanked the State Government for supporting her through the provision of funds in coordinating the activities of the court, while appealing for infrastructure development of the court.
“The customary court in Plateau was the first to be established in the country in 1979.
“I appeal to the governor for the renovation and construction of its structure to look like the court I dreamed to see in my lifetime,” she said.
She urged judicial officers to give the incoming substantive President of the court, Justice Patrick Dabit, the necessary support to discharge his duties diligently and wished him a successful tenure.
Kyentu thanked her family for the support given to her in her public service career while encouraging legal luminaries not to despise days of early beginnings.
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Justice Julia Kyentu was born on June 27, 1955, joined Plateau government in 1982, retiring on attainment of 65 years of age.