Liberia: Supreme Court Launches Strategic Plan for Judicial Innovations

The Supreme Court on Tuesday, February 6, launched its second Strategic Plan for the Judiciary (SPJ) following the successful implementation of the 2018-2023 Plan.

The plan, Chief Justice Sie-A-Nyene Yuoh said, is a product of a consultation process involving justices, judicial staffers, and development partners, particularly the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), adding “for underwriting the cost for the hiring of a consultant to work with our team in the development of this plan.”

The SPJ is built on the experiences and achievements of the previous Strategic Plan and defines how the courts will operate over the next five years, between 2024-2028.

It aligns the projects and programs of the Court with the overall judicial development agenda. 

But during the launch, Justice Yuoh disclosed that it was part of her aspirations when she assumed the helm of leadership in the judiciary in 2022.

“My vision for a new judiciary is crafted into what I refer to as rebranding the judiciary,” the chief justice told her audience.

“This vision encapsulates renewal of the system through addressing the systemic weakness that has impeded the effective function of the judiciary.”

She, however, maintains that the goals and objectives defined in the SPJ, when actualized, will get the judiciary on a sustained trajectory of reform, never to reverse to business as usual.

On the implementation of the SPJ, Justice Yuoh said she would not see her vision being fully implemented.

“Even though my tenure as chief justice may not allow me to see the full implementation of this vision, with the confidence that I have in my team, I am convinced that this vision as espoused in the SPJ will be implemented to the fullest." The chief justice assured her unwavering stance of her colleagues for the implementation of her vision when she should have tired.

She likewise acknowledged that the judiciary, over the years, has been plagued with multiple challenges ranging from “inadequate budgetary allocation to poor infrastructure and human capacity.”

These challenges, according to her, have affected the overall performance of the Judiciary as a system.

In addition to the contributions of each Justice, past Members of the Court, especially the retired Chief Justice Francis Korkpor, were also recognized by Chief Justice Yuoh as instrumental to the SPJ. “With the SPJ, I am grateful to my colleagues of the Supreme Court Bench who approved this five-year plan, thus an indication of their identification with the vision of the plan to serve as a roadmap for the Judiciary’s development efforts over the next five years,” said the Chief Justice.