‘The Rule of Law must operate in all conditions,’ these were the words that were emphasised by the Chief Justice of PNG Chief Sir Salamo Injia, as he addressed the three Disciplined Forces, their respective Commanders, Judges, Magistrates, Lawyers, Foreign Dignitaries and the general public who had participated in the 2015 Legal Year Opening.
Despite the early morning rain the traditional march eventuated to mark the opening of the 2015 Legal Year. Led by a combined band consisting of members from the Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary (RPNGC) and the Correctional Service (CS); with the armed guard of honour comprising of the three disciplined forces consisting of the RPNGC, CS and the Papua New Guinea Defence Force (PNGDF); the Judges, Magistrates, Lawyers, other members of the Law & Justice Sector and the public marched proudly to the beat of the combined band; as they made their way up to the Waigani National and Supreme Courts premises.
The Chief Justice encouraged and challenged the disciplined forces to follow and uphold the Rule of Law by supporting the decisions made by the courts to dispense justice, whether favourable or not. He further highlighted that the disciplined forces need to perform their duties with due care and diligence; to always remember that PNG is ruled by the Rule of Law and the Courts will anticipate the law enforcers to support in maintain the Rule of Law in the country.
‘The Rule of Law must operate in all conditions. The Rule of Law knows no season. It must operate in all weather conditions. The fact that we have all gathered today in this manner, despite the outpour of rain this morning, is a good sign that the future ahead of us is good.’ said the Chief Justice Sir Salamo Injia.
Formalities led to an ecumenical church service led by Father Klower Waimi of the St. Martins Anglican Church was held for the Legal fraternity, however the public were invited to attend. Following the church service everyone made their way up to the area for the official ground breaking ceremony for the new Waigani Supreme and National Court complex.
The 2015 Legal Year Opening Ceremony is historical for the PNG Judiciary; besides the fact that the event was for the first time held on at the Waigani Court premises; but also that the construction of the anticipated new Court Complex will now commence.
The Judiciary is the third arm of the Government of the Independent State of Papua New Guinea. The high Courts of the Judiciary comprise the Supreme and National Courts whose core function is to hear and dispose of cases that come before them. Easy access to judicial services by the people at all levels of the community is one of the Judiciary’s main mission statements stated in the Judiciary’s Corporate Plan 2006 – 2010 and the Judiciary’s Corporate Plan 2011-2015. The Judiciary’s Corporate Plan is designed to operate within and to give effect to the governments planning priorities as set out in Vision 2050 and Medium Term Plans to bring effective service delivery to all levels of the community.
The Annual Calendar 2015 for the Supreme and National Court of PNG has been decided.
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