There has been various writings pertaining to the current Judicial inititiatives since the Bar Council had their EGM last Saturday, the 12.12.2009. They are of most relevant and interesting read.
I stand to be corrected but I am of the view that the discussions so far has yet to fully address the real roots of the matter. Whilst time is of the essence in the dispensation of justice but what judicially evolves within that judicial time frame is equally important. To use a quantitative approach to measure such evolution could be inaccurate though an interesting idea. Nevertheless, the quantitative approach is still relevant as far as numbers is concerned.
May I suggest that it is important for the Judiciary and the Bar to develop a case management system rather than emphasising on the rate of disposal of cases. I think that the former approach could be more of assistance.
I have read how statistics are consistently being used to show the effectiveness and/or efficiency of our legal system. That is one thing but an over emphasis on statistics is a short term solution. The society has a tendency to litigate against each other of late and we cannot avoid entertaining the fact that there will be more cases being filed into the Courts.
I have not actually seen the Fast Track system in action over in Kuching but if I may, I would say that Fast Track is probably part of the statistics package. If I am correct, it is designed to dispose cases on a faster pace. Now, if a case management system can be put in place, the chances are those cases could be disposed off as fast as that on the Fast Track. But since I have little knowledge on the current Fast Track system, what I have said could be entirely wrong.
I think our CJSS is merely asking the Sarawak Advocates to assist the Court in its current initiatives to clear cases. Just as our learned brothers and sister at law over in Peninsula, I think the pace of the system has consumed us Advocates in Sarawak especially the smaller firms.
Hence, the phrase "Justice hurried is Justice buried" has been coming up more often than not of late. If Justice is to be hurried, it has to be properly hurried. If we cannot explain and the public cannot understand the definition, if there is any, to "Hurried Justice", then we may need to go back to the drawing board and see how we can fine tune the whole system. Afterall, our yardstick is now the public's perceptions.
The Annual Delegate's Conference is fixed for 02.01.2010. Whilst I have not seen the Agenda, if it has been delivered, I think the Delegates ought to discuss the state of the current Judicial initiatives and see how they can make representations to our CJSS on ways to improve it so that both the Judiciary and the Bar as well as the public can benefit from it. Whether the Delegates will actually discuss it, I leave it to their jurisdiction.
Thanks & regards,