US to support Nigeria’s judiciary process –Envoy

From Godwin Tsa, Abuja

The United States of America has expressed willingness to support Nigeria’s judiciary process during the 2023 general election.

The US Ambassador to Nigeria, Ms. Mary Beth Leonard, who disclosed this in Abuja said her country was equally ready to collaborate with Nigeria judiciary in the core areas of cyber security and intellectual property protection.

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She made the disclosures when she visited the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Ibrahim Muhammad.

Leonard, who was accompanied by top US officials told the CJN that the US was looking to increase her capacity-building engagement on cyber security issues including the rising profile of intellectual property protection.

She added that her country was interested in continued collaboration with the judiciary and courts through its International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs Office (INL) and Office of Overseas Prosecutorial Development, Assistance and Training (OPDAT).

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Justice Muhammad, in his response, said the judiciary was receptive to initiatives aimed at improving and strengthening the capacity of judicial officers in the handling of cases on emerging crime trend in the country.

A statement by the Special Assistant on Media to the CJN, Ahuraka Isah said: “Some of those emerging crimes, the CJN said include cybercrime, cross-jurisdictional infringement of Intellectual property rights, and cases related to cybersecurity and espionage.

The CJN added that judges in the country require training on block technology and online dispute resolution as it affects e-commerce which is becoming a challenge due to inadequate awareness of technology and technical abilities and capacity.

The CJN requested for workshops that would border on Copyright Law in the new digital environment for judicial officers and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards relating to intellectual property disputes.

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