Judge A. Blamo Dixon
Judge Dixon Wants Judiciary Budget Increased
By Ballah Kollie, LINA Bong County Correspondent
GBARNGA, August 11 (LINA) – Judge A. Blamo Dixon is appealing for an increase in the budgetary allotment of the Judiciary to strengthen that branch of government to fully play its Constitutional role.
He said as an institution with the Constitutional mandate to fight crime and ensure maintenance of the rule of law, its financial potential was critical in ensuring full attainment of these goals.
Speaking Monday at the opening of the Ninth Judicial Circuit Court, which he is presiding over for the August Term of Court, Judge Dixon described as “ridiculous” the allocation of less than two percent of the National Budget to the Judiciary which serves as 'queen' of all three branches of government.
“Since the enactment of the New Jury Law, the central government has not provided the US$7million earmarked for the judiciary to facilitate the constitution of the Jury Management Team or Commission that shall be responsible for the recruitment of jurors to assist the courts as judges of the facts,” said Judge Dixon.
He noted the lack of respect for constituted authorities, including the offices of the president, lower and upper Houses of the National Legislature and even those interpreting the law.
Reflecting on the two terms of court he presided over in 2009 at the Ninth Judicial Circuit Court in Gbarnga, Bong County, Judge Dixon lamented the manner in which murder and theft cases were handled by defense counsels and staff of the court.
He cited two cases, one in which the defense counsels deployed “delay tactics intended to thwart justice”, and another where court staff allegedly manipulated instruments that were admitted as evidence in the Phebe Hospital medicine theft case.
He vowed that such acts will not be tolerated as long as he presides over the Ninth Judicial Circuit Court in Bong County.
Judge Dixon said his attention was also drawn to several negative vices, including the growing wave of lawlessness, lack of respect for constituted authorities, including the presidency and National Legislature as well as violence, destruction, vandalism, blackmailing, deceit, scornfulness, and the deadly Ebola virus which have permeated the Liberian society.
Reading his charge as he took over from Judge J. Boima Kontoe, Judge Dixon noted that with the prevailing Ebola situation the court will not take the usual 42 jurors, but rather 30 due to demands to decongest public places.
He stressed that all 30 jurors will be required to bring hand sanitizers for their own safety.
In remarks, both prosecuting and defense counsels promised to fully cooperate and ensure the impartial dispensation of justice to all.