18 Feb 2015

Technology sought to improve justice in Pacific

6:19 pm on 18 February 2015

An aid programme working to improve the quality of justice in Oceania is looking to use a more technological approach to supporting courts in the region.

The New Zealand funded Pacific Judicial Development Programme has been working in 14 Pacific Island countries since the 1990s.

Programme team leader, Livingston Armytage, says about three quarters of judicial officers in the Pacific have no formal legal training and many litigants are going to court with no legal representation.

Mr Armytage says Pacific countries have their own unique problems but the distance and remoteness of communities needing justice is universal.

" What we want to do now is to explore intelligently, how information technology can overcome these burdens of physical distance the burdens of smallness and remoteness and yet recognize and consolidate the diversity that exists in each different island."

Listen to full interview with Livingstone Amytage on Dateline Pacific

A beach in Kiribati

The Pacific Judicial Development Programme is exploring ways to bring justice to remote communities. Photo: RNZI