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Chief Justice Introduces Shift System to Courts to Tackle Case Backlog

In a bid to address the mounting backlog of cases, the Judicial Service has unveiled a pioneering shift system, initiated by Chief Justice Gertrude Sackey Torkornoo. Dubbed the Court Shift System (CSS), this innovative approach will enable selected courts to operate in two sessions, spanning from morning to evening.

Scheduled to commence on March 25, 2024, the CSS will see courts conducting morning sessions from 8:30 am to 1:00 pm and afternoon sessions from 1:30 pm to 6:30 pm. The selected courts for this system include two High Courts at Adentan, the Amasaman High Court 1, the Circuit Court at Weija, the District Courts at La and Teshie, and the two District Courts at Madina, alongside the Nsawam High Court.

A circular issued to all courts by Judicial Secretary Justice Cyra Pamela Addo highlighted that the CSS, initially piloted, targets courts burdened with over 600 pending cases. The rationale behind the initiative is to alleviate the backlog, thus enhancing access to justice for citizens.

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“The Court Shift System is envisaged to reduce the backlog of cases, offer flexible court hours accommodating diverse schedules, and improve the overall effectiveness of the judicial system,” the circular stated.

Justice Torkornoo, during a media interaction following the inauguration of a new circuit court in Atebubu, praised the government for constructing over 100 new courts. However, she underscored the pressing issue of courts inundated with up to 1,000 cases, which she described as exerting immense pressure on the judicial process and hindering expeditious case resolution.

The CSS is poised to optimize existing court resources to address the persistent challenge of case backlog, thus bolstering the efficiency and accessibility of the judicial system.

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