9 of Khost districts without judges
KHOST CITY (PAN): Nine districts of southeastern Khost province are without judges and courts, forcing residents to visit the provincial capital for a resolution of their problems, an official said on Tuesday.
Only three districts -- Zazai Maidan, Tanai and Ismailkhel -- have judges to adjudicate on people's cases, Appellate Court chief Fazal Attique told Pajhwok Afghan News in an exclusive interview.
Of the 54 posts of judges sanctioned for the province, only 17 have been filled so far. Judges are reluctant to be posted in remote districts due to insecurity and lack of court buildings, according to the official.
The lingering problem, which has been taken up with Supreme Court officials several times, could be addressed if court buildings are constructed and judges paid higher salaries, Attique believed.
Under an agreement between the justice and the interior ministry, police will maintain security of courts and judges. However, the official pointed out that the provincial police headquarters had provided only three security guards for their department.
But the police chief, Gen. Abdul Hakim Ishaqzai, said the agreement envisaged four security guards for the department and they were already performing their duty.
A resident of Sabari district, Noor Ahmad, was forced to bring a land dispute case to Khost City, the provincial capital. The man complained he had to attend court hearings on a daily basis, spending up to 3,000 afghanis ($66.66) on each trip.
"My case, which has been in the court for a year, is yet to be decided. Judges have repeatedly assured me of a swift decision," he said, urging the Ministry of Justice to take effective steps to address the issue.
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