*Unveils plans to establish revenue court to drive state’s IGR
By Ngozi Ekhator
The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has revealed plans to collaborate with the state judiciary on the establishment of a Revenue Court to boost Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) in the state.
Obaseki disclosed this after handing over the keys of the newly constructed High Court Complex to the Chief Judge of Edo State, Honourable Justice Esther Edigin.
He said, “We are transparent with finances and with your support, we are establishing revenue courts in re-tooling our revenue collecting system to expand and increase significantly our IGR in Edo State. This will enable us to invest more money into the judiciary and other sectors.
“Working with the judiciary, we have a marshal plan to reposition the magistracy in Edo State. I thank the Chief Judge who through her architect gave us a template design of how magistrate courts should look like in rural and urban areas. Based on these plans and other bigger strategies, we should be able to roll out these plans before mid-year.”
Obaseki noted, “I am here to undertake a simple handover ceremony for the use of the judiciary as the commissioning will be done by the Chief Justice of Nigeria at a later date. I am here to handover the keys of this property to the judiciary for use.
“This is an opportunity to unveil our rationale for what we are doing. Without the judiciary, we can’t have democracy. We need the judiciary, which is important in sustaining our democracy.
“We are hoping to build new courts in Auchi and Ekpoma. I felt sad during my electioneering after visiting 192 wards across the state and seeing what is called magistrate courts in some communities. They are not befitting of such names,” he added.
In her welcome address, the Chief Judge of Edo State, Hon. Justice Esther Edigin, expressed appreciation to the governor for the infrastructural development carried out in the judiciary, reiterating that the judiciary is the bastion of Nigeria’s democracy and the last hope of the proverbial common man.
She noted, “A strong and truly independent judiciary is in the best interest of all of us. It is indeed the best legacy we can all bequeath to our children and generation yet unborn.”
The Chief Judge also expressed appreciation to the governor for connecting the entire Edo State High Court complex to the Ossiomo Independent Power Plant (IPP) grid for uninterrupted power supply.