10 September, 2015

Supreme Court Legal Aid Office gateway to Equal Access to Justice

Last Updated: 10 September 2015

 

On 8 September 2015, USAID’s Justice for All Program and the National Legal Aid Services Organization (NLASO) organized a launching ceremony of the Supreme Court Legal Aid Office. The Supreme Court Legal Aid Office was officially opened by a ribbon cutting ceremony with the Chief Justice of Bangladesh.

 

This official inception of the Supreme Court Legal Aid Office ensures that legal aid is accessible to the poor and distressed. Any eligible applicant can now access free legal aid by submit-ting an application to the Supreme Court Legal Aid Office. After reviewing the application, a lawyer is appointed to represent the applicant free of cost. The government will pay the honorarium directly to the advocate. The Supreme Court Legal Aid Office is now available for writ, civil and criminal appeals.

 

Over 400 participants attended the ceremony, including Mr. Justice Surendra Kumar Sinha, Chief Justice of Bangladesh, Ms. Janina Jaruzelski, Mission Director, USAID/ Bangladesh, Attorney General for Bangladesh  Mr. Mahbubey Alam, Mr. Justice Md. Nizamul Huq, Chairman of the Supreme Court Legal Aid Committee, Justices of the Appellate and High Court Division of the Supreme Court, Registrar General of the Supreme Court, representatives from the Ministry of Law, Justice & Parliamentary Affairs, panel lawyers of Supreme Court, Director of National Legal Aid Services Organization, and the media. The event took place in the auditorium of the Supreme Court of Bangladesh. 

 

Mr. Malik Abdullah Al-Amin, Director of NLASO stated that, the Supreme Court Legal Aid Office priority is to focus on providing access to justice for the poor.

 

Ms. Janina Jaruzelski, Mission Director, USAID/Bangladesh said, “Today’s launching of the Supreme Court Legal Aid Office is a huge step forward, as thousands of poor people will have critically important legal help to resolve major issues in serious cases. This is a tremendous advance in making justice truly available for all”.

 

The opening of the Supreme Court Legal Aid Office will ensure the delivery of free legal aid in the formal justice sector at the highest level.