Supreme Court Chief Justice Francis S. Korkpor has cautioned the new corps of magistrates of the James A. A. Pierre Judicial Institute to dispense justice fairly without fear or favor no matter who or what is involved in a case.
“You will soon take on the role of judges determining the fate of your fellowmen; we place our hope in you to do the right thing at all times, so that by your actions and decisions you will bring credibility to yourselves and to the judiciary,” Justice Korkpor pointed out.
“Do not be distracted by negative criticisms so long as your actions are within the confines of the law. I assure you that we will fully support and stand by you as long as you do the right thing,” the Chief Justice Korkpor encouraged the graduates.
He spoke last Friday at the graduation program of the James A. A. Pierre Judicial Institute for Professional Magistrates at the Temple of Justice Banquet Hall on Capitol Hill in Monrovia.
Chief Justice Korkpor also indicated that at some of the Magisterial Courts the Stipendiary Magistrates are not law school graduates, so the graduating magistrates would be required to work with them and offer them the deserved respect.
He further stated that the Supreme Court will give priority to Judicial Institute graduates in awarding scholarships to attend the Louis Arthur Crimes School of Law at the University of Liberia.
He said JI graduates, who sit and pass the entrance exam to the law school, will be given preference, but because funds for the scholarship are limited, “we will proceed on a first come, first serve basis.”
This means that graduates of previous cycles will be given priority over recent graduates, he said, adding that “selection will be based on good performance on the job, and this is an avenue for you to climb up the echelon of the judicial hierarchy.”
He, however, expressed appreciation to the Board of Governors headed by Associate Justice Sie-a-Nyene G. Yuoh and the administration and instructional staffs of the Judicial Institute for the successful completion of the third circle of the professional magistrates training program since its establishment in 2008.
Meanwhile, Chief Justice Korkpor said some of those who benefited from the various specially designed training programs at the institute are judges, city solicitors, public defenders, clerks of court and police officers, amongst others.
He then pointed out that besides the training the institute has completed and in some instances produced research materials in some important areas of the law.
These include Criminal Procedure Law, Property Law, Labor Law, Constitutional Law, International Law, and Juvenile Justice Law, among others etc.