​District courts need funding for new home

Plans by the Magisterial Services to have its headquarters and district court rooms accommodated in one complex by 2020 may be delayed.

This is because it has not secured funding for the construction.

On 15 December 2015, the Magisterial Services launched its Corporate Plan 2016-2020.

One of the main priorities outlined in the plan was to work towards having that court complex up by 2020 so all the district court cases can be heard in the same building.

The Australian Government, through its Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) program, assisted the Magisterial Service with the full cost of the master design of the new court complex.

Chief Magistrate Nerrie Eliakim told Loop PNG today that the challenge now is securing funding for the actual construction phase.

“I haven’t had any commitments yet made by the government since the launch,” she responded when asked by this newsroom for an update of the plan.

“The biggest challenge is the insufficient funding that the Magisterial Services is facing.”

Land was allocated for the new Magisterial Services Court complex, to be built next to the main National and Supreme Court Building at Waigani, which is also undergoing construction for the new court complex.

This four-storey complex will house all the district courts for NCD under one roof. It will also accommodate the Magisterial Service administration.

Currently, the Local and Provincial Land Court hearings are being heard at Downtown, Port Moresby. This includes Juvenile and Family Courts.

The summary offences court hearings are being heard at Boroko while the Committal, Traffic as well as Central Court matters are being heard at Waigani.

 (Pictured is the architectural plan of the new complex)

Sally Pokiton