Lawyers across the country held a one-hour protest outside district courts on Friday, over the mess which has beset the e-justice system.

This is the second protest this week, where lawyers said they were fed up with the failures surrounding the e-justice system, which collapsed on its first day of operation.

“For two weeks now, our work has been paralysed, the justice delivery system has been paralysed, as well as the law firms,” deputy chairman of the Bar Association Nicolas Tsardellis said outside Nicosia district court.

The protest took place from 10.30 to 11.30am “to express our indignation and dissatisfaction at the situation we are facing.”

Superficial approaches so far

Meanwhile, Deputy Minister of Research Nicodemos Damianou said there had been an extension granted to try and get the e-justice system up to speed but it seemed it was not going to be properly resolved in time.

As such, the previous i-justice system may return into place starting Monday as a temporary measure to keep the justice system somewhat afloat.

The bar association has backed the suggestion, however, Tsardellis said they had “reservations as to whether this is possible.”

“I hope this can be achieved in such a short time.”

The deputy chairman highlighted the government should realise it should invest in the country’s justice system, and that “superficial approaches” used so far, have left lawyers unable to function.

‘Filthy conditions’

Tsardellis said it was high time the government took the matter seriously as the system had serious problems from the minute it went into operation two weeks ago. They have yet to be resolved.

Apart from the fact that it is currently not functional or stable, the procedures behind the system are problematic, and time consuming for lawyers, he added.

The whole debacle is a blight to the justice system and the shabby building facilities in Nicosia were an indication of this, considering there had been promises decades ago that they would be upgraded, Tsardellis specified.

He also said that the much-touted transition to electronic justice is not a reality, saying that there was electronic justice up until January 13 and since January 15, this stopped. The government should immediately find solutions, Tsardellis added.

Earlier this week, lawyers protested outside parliament, with Tsardellis specifying that if the problems are not resolved, the lawyers will continue to take measures.