332 NOCOT DETAINEES FREED VIA ‘JUSTICE ON WHEELS’
EJOW VEHICLE. The bus of the Supreme Court’s Enhanced Justice on Wheels (EJOW) program make rounds across jails in North Cotabato province on Dec. 6-7, 2018 that resulted in marathon hearings and eventual release of some 332 detainees that have cases in the local courts. (Photo by North Cotabato PIO)
KIDAPAWAN CITY – Some 332 detainees in North Cotabato jails have been allowed to go home after two days of marathon hearings of cases against them through the government’s Enhanced Justice on Wheels (EJOW), a provincial official said Saturday.
“The provincial government of North Cotabato has once again successfully conducted the EJOW program of the Supreme Court (SC) with astounding results,” North Cotabato Governor Emmylou Mendoza said in a statement.
EJOW is a program of the SC that gives greater access to justice by assisting in the speedy resolution of cases and expediting the release of prisoners.
SC Administrator Jose Midas Marquez personally led the outreach program Thursday and Friday that resulted in the release of 332 detainees, whose cases were dismissed for various legal reasons.
“A total of 332 detainees were released from different district jails in the province of Cotabato, mostly from the North Cotabato District Jail after fast and on-the-spot and free court hearings and dispute resolution services – adjudication, mediation, and conciliation,” Mendoza added.
Marquez, also the SC spokesperson, lauded Mendoza for supporting and actively partnering with the SC in the implementation EJOW, which aims to give the poor greater access to justice.
A series of hearings were conducted, including the promulgation of decisions and issuance of orders involving detention prisoners, mobile court-annexed mediation, and information dissemination on recent laws to guide barangay officials on how to handle local disputes.
This year’s EJOW initiative is the fourth for North Cotabato since 2015.