Liberia’s Justice Minister Seeks Amendment In Criminal Law   

Liberia’s Minister of Justice, Cllr. Frank Musa Dean

Justice Minister Frank M. Dean has disclosed that amending the Criminal Procedure Law will further strengthen the criminal justice system in Liberia.

According to Minister Dean, the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) engaged the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in 2018 to support the amendment of Chapter 16, sub-section 16.4, Chapter 3, section 3.8 and Chapter 10 section 10.2, 10.4 and 10.6 of the Criminal Procedure Law.

The Justice Minister made the disclosure last Friday at a one day consultative meeting which brought together participants from the UNDP and other UN agencies, officials of government and representatives of civil society held at a local hotel in Sinkor.

He indicated that the Ministry of Justice knowing the significance of improving the Criminal Justice System decided to include the amendment of Chapter 12 section 12. 1 and 12.2 and section 3.6 of the New Judiciary Law.

He pointed out that these chapters to be amended will provide for plea bargaining, amending the quarterly Circuit Courts’ term to a bi-annual term, provision of authority and arrest, appointment of additional Relieving judges for Circuit Courts and provision for a standard on preliminary examination in cases above the trial jurisdiction of magistrates and justice of the peace.

Minister Dean stressed that the Ministry of Justice considers the amendment of these chapters of the Criminal Procedure Law as a milestone reach.

He asserted that amending these chapters in the Criminal Procedure Law will address the key challenges of prolonged   pre-trial   detection and dockets over-crowdedness.

He expressed appreciation to the Rule of Law joint program supported by UNDP.OHCHR and Government of Sweden through the Embassy for supporting the Ministry of Justice in achieving this process.

“We can assured you of our commitments to engage the Legislature to amend these chapters of the Criminal Procedure Law after your inputs” Minister Dean added.

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About Cholo Brooks 13357 Articles
Joel Cholo Brooks is a Liberian journalist who previously worked for several international news outlets including the BBC African Service. He is the CEO of the Global News Network which publishes two local weeklies, The Star and The GNN-Liberia Newspapers. He is a member of the Press Union Of Liberia (PUL) since 1986, and several other international organizations of journalists, and is currently contributing to the South Africa Broadcasting Corporation as Liberia Correspondent.

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