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Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers on Friday said an independent judiciary and respect for rule of law are fundamental for democracy to thrive.

Wike made the assertion at the opening of the 2016/2017 Legal Year of the state’s judiciary in Port Harcourt.

He said the rule of law and independence of the judiciary are twin values that defines the essence of true democratic society.

"While the rule of law suggests equity irrespective of status or position to reflect the laws of the land, the judiciary must be independent and effective to enforce the universal application of the rule of law.

"Outside of any or both values, is a recipe for anarchy," he said.

The governor said Nigerians are in support of the fight against corruption but that the fight should be done within the confines of the law.

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He said the National Judicial Council (NJC), has given approval to swear-in two new high court judges for the state judiciary.

The Chief Judge of the state, Justice Adama Iyayi-Laminkara, said 8,632 cases were brought forward at the state high courts as at September.

She said that new cases filed at the high courts during same period were 7,189 while 4,913 cases were disposed of by the courts.

Iyayi-Lamikara stated that 10,908 cases were pending at the courts.

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