By Sunmola Olowookere, Jimoh Ahmed, Solomon Runsewe & Kayode Olabanji
Activities were paralysed yesterday at the Ondo State High Courts and Magistrates’ Courts as the Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN), commenced an indefinite strike to press home their demands.
The union had threatened to embark on the industrial action over the delay in the implementation of their financial autonomy.
The Hope correspondents who went round courts in the state observed that the courts were under lock and key and did not attend to litigants.
Ondo state chapter of Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN) also went on a peaceful protest yesterday as they joined the nationwide indefinite strike to protest the non-implementation of the financial autonomy.
Ondo State Chairman, JUSUN, Comrade Femi Afolabi called on government to implement the financial autonomy for the judiciary.
Our correspondents who monitored the industrial action reported that in Akure and Ondo, the state and the Federal High Courts were under lock and key by JUSUN officials led by the state Chairman, Comrade Femi Afolabi.
According to him, “the strike is to seek financial autonomy of the judiciary, though the federal government has allowed for financial autonomy, state governments are being accused of not granting financial independence to the judiciary in states.
He called on the state government to take the issue of the financial autonomy as a matter of urgency and act fast.
A visit to the court premises in Ikare Akoko by The Hope revealed that some people who had businesses in the court were disappointed to find out that the courts did not open for business.
They however left for their various homes, disappointed, after waiting for hours only to find out that none of the court staffers turned up for duty.
Mrs Olumakinde Veronica who told our correspondent that she had come for an affidavit to correct her names to effect some changes in her bank account could not hide her disappointment as she said her hope of withdrawing money to solve some pressing financial needs was dashed.
Meanwhile, reports from other towns like Oka Akoko, Okeagbe, Owo and Ifon confirmed the same situation.
Report from Okitipupa said Judiciary workers in the judicial division joined the nationwide indefinite strike to protest the non-implementation of financial autonomy for the judiciary.
The Hope correspondent, who visited the court premises in Okitipupa yesterday, met the court shut, while few workers were seen hanging around.