The Oyo State Judiciary has started e-filing court processes within its magistrate court as part of attempts to digitalize the court and make justice delivery in the state quick, effective, and less burdensome.
On Monday, the High Court’s facilities hosted the inauguration of the Oyo Magistracy’s electronic filing system. Judges, magistrates, and representatives of the legal profession were shown a presentation on the system’s operating principles.
The Chief Judge of Oyo State, Justice Munta Ladipo Abimbola, urged legal professionals to embrace the ongoing digitization of the court because it is in line with international best practices and is intended to make their work faster, easier, and ensure efficient justice delivery. He was speaking at the launch of the e-filing for magistrate courts.
According to him, “E-filing is one of the aspects of digitalising the magistrate court and fast tracking the processes as it means that lawyers no longer need to appear physically at the court registry to file processes, they just need to do it online from the comfort of their homes or offices.
“It will cut the the time uses in filing processes for cases and subsequently, reduce the time used on individual cases. We have started e-affidavit so we already have a process; the materials needed for it to work are already in place,” he said.
Justice Abimbola explained that there will be training and workshops for lawyers and other stakeholders, especially those who are ICT complaint to facilitate the the use of the e-filling.
Also speaking, the Executive Director of Cinfores, a consultancy firm that partnered with the judiciary to set up the e -filing system, Ayodele Afeniforo, emphasised that the e-filling will make the work of lawyers.
“We have been able to use the Court Information Management System to create a platform where people can log in to carry out their filing activities. It makes the court easily accessible to everyone as people can sit in their homes and access the court registry to do their business; log in with ease, file procedure and even do affidavits and will through e-probate.
“It is easier to use and there is a guideline on the portal to put users through the process. This is an innovation that will help in quickening justice delivery; it aids efficiency and productivity and also generates more income for the people involved.
Speaking on the likely danger, Afeniforo said the only challenge is security of data but assured that as an organisation, Cinfores has built a firewall about the judiciary system to prevent information theft, adding that ” as a cyber security expert, we have done what is required to protect the judiciary data and as an organisation that partnered on this, we also can’t access the information , information is the new oil and we have protected Oyo judiciary from data breach.”