Performance Review Programme to weed out non-performing judges, magistrates launched

Chief Justice Anin Yeboah

Chief Justice Kwasi Anin Yeboah has launched a Performance Review Programme to enhance the performance of judges and magistrates.

The programme would help the judiciary to monitor and evaluate judges.

Under the programme, a committee will monitor and evaluate the work of judges by witnessing the various court sittings, delivery of quality judgements and rulings of various judges as well as obtain feedback from the public.

The programme also comes with mentoring opportunities.

According to the Chief Justice, the programme would also weed out those who after series of training failed to meet the professional standards and had become “non trainable”.

He said the programmes were an “internal quality assurance arrangement” and that it would not interfere in the work of judges and magistrates.

“The Performance Review Programme would discourage abuse of processes, reviews, and eventually delays.

“The fact that a judge’s conduct would be reviewed should spur or motivate judges and magistrates to discharge their duties without fear or favour, affection or ill will. A confident judge does not panic no matter the perceived influence,” the Chief Justice added.

He said the programme would not give room for biased and opportunist comments by court users and urged judges and magistrates not to use “offensive language” in their judgements.

The Chief Justice appealed to lawyers and court users to fill the judges and magistrates Performance Review Forms “with condor or devoid of prejudice”,

“I am of firm view that the review would not affect the impartiality of judges but strengthen their judicial independence and judges would also administer justice effectively and efficiently,” he added.

Justice Gabriel Pwamang, a Supreme Court Judge and Chairperson of the Judges and Magistrates’ Performance Review Programme, said judges and magistrates would be assessed through the evaluation of submitted judgements/ rulings, and observations of court proceedings.

Additionally, Justice Pwamang said they would also be evaluated by mentor senior judges, completion of feedback forms by court users and feedback forms by lawyers.

Justice Pwamang said to ensure consistency, transparency and objectivity in the evaluation process, the Chief Justice had given approval for standardised forms developed by the Committee.

“Self-appraisal forms would have to be completed by the Judge or Magistrate,” he added.

Membership of the Committee to review judges and magistrates performance are: Justice Sir Dennis Adjei, Justice Anthony Oppong, Justice Mrs Angela Mensah Homiah, Justice Cynthia Pamela Addo, Justice Afia Serwa Asare-Botwe, all of Court of Appeal.

The rest are: Mr Anthony Forson, former President of the Ghana Bar Association and Mr Frederick Naidoo, Head of Human Resource of the Judicial Service.

Source: GNA

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