Chief Magistrate's Speech at Launching of MS Upgraded Website

Lamana Hotel Balcony Conference Room

Friday 2nd December 2011

Honourable Chief Justice of Papua New Guinea, Members of NCM and LJS Working Group, Distinguished Guests, Key Stakeholder Partners, Ladies and Gentlemen, it gives me great pleasure to welcome you all this afternoon on this occasion for launching of a new look Magisterial Service Website.

Being mandated under the Constitution to administer a branch of judicial services within the Papua New Guinea Law and Justice Sector sees Magisterial Service embodying goal number two of the Sector Strategic Framework (SSF), namely Improved Access to Justice and Just Results.
The expectations of the people of PNG for law and justice services have been expressed through the Government and our Law and Justice Partners, we have endeavored to meet our expected measures of:

  • All people having greater access to justice services
  • Improvement in the disposition of cases
  • Improvement in community confidence in the justice system

through a concerted approach upon adoption of the SSF and MS Corporate Plan 2006-2010.

Implementation of agency and sector driven priorities within MS hasn’t been very easy and we have experienced many challenges and failures along the way. However, there have been successful acquittals of Government and Donor Partner investments in our outgoing MS Corporate Plan 2006 - 2010, such as:

  • The Registry Enhancement Program (REP),
  • Judicial Development Program
  • Major Facilities Infrastructure Programs such as Buka & Kainantu Court Houses, to name a few

One such major activity in the outgoing Corporate Plan has been a District Court Electronic Case Management System (DCECMS). Over the last six years, it has been a challenging road to build up its basic facilities and infrastructure. The investments both from within MS and the sector have been at no small cost to get the computers, the network links, the database services and training out to our provincial District Courts. These have been able to start harvesting valuable case data to facilitate informed planning, strengthening our processes and governance practices and demonstrate our accountability to court users, key stakeholders, donor partners, the government and people of PNG.

This afternoon’s website launching comes as a culmination from six years of both institutional and personal efforts of MS staff and management which I now declare officially as an acquittal of a major KPI from our 2006-2010 Corporate Plan under the goal of Improved Access to Justice and Just Results.

The Registry Enhancement Program has been a major impetus that has been able to put in place the training and desired staff discipline for District Court registry officers to commit themselves to data uploading regularly. This had gradually changed the face of court registries from a paper based environment to a paperless one and has been able to generate real time information on the status of case files.

The principle thrust of this website is an Online Service Counter. It has been re-designed to present to the user a menu of services Magisterial Service would like to offer principally to court users and others who would like to research the organization. And while we recognize that there is still more room for improvement, I have confidence from having made this significant first step. Before I take my leave from this speaker’s dias, it would be remiss of me to not acknowledge the work of those before me who have contributed immensely to the final delivery of these results.

Firstly, let me acknowledge former Chief Magistrate, Mr. John Numapo and his able Deputy Mr. Stephen Oli, our friends from the Law and Justice Sector Partnership of past and present, Mr. John Dinsdale (now with AusAid), Mr. Ken Richardson (former IM/IT Advisor), the National Coordinating Mechanism (NCM), the Working Group as well as our partners in the Sector.

Let me also acknowledge our resource partners such as Telikom PNG, Datec PNG Ltd, Ash and Bros Ltd, and Rumbam Computers and Communications who have contributed immensely to making the platform available for this new service to be offered by the Magisterial Service.

Finally, on behalf of Magisterial Service I thank you all for taking your time this afternoon to be able to attend this event and grace us with your presence on this momentous occasion for our organization.

Thank you very much. JACK AVU AUGUST.

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