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Kabale High Court Judge Unveils Plan to Clear Case Backlog.

Kabale High Court circuit has unveiled a plan to clear case backlog by the close of the calendar year. Backlog refers to cases that spend more than two years in the court system.

Kabale Resident Judge, Hon. Justice Moses Kawumi Kazibwe said that a total of 509 criminal cases including appeals, revision and bail applications and 237 civil matters are backlog. 

He said plans for case clearance and case backlog include court sessions,weeding out programmes for non-starter cases, meditations and mass sensitization through radios on Judiciary reforms as well as standby cause-lists for vulnerable persons.

The Judge made the remarks at a Monitoring & Evaluation exercise being carried out by the Principal Judge, Hon. Justice Dr. Yorokamu Bamwine. 

"We now have airtime on three radio stations to discuss matters regarding mediation process as an alternative dispute resolution and we also have embarked on prisons visits to sensitize inmates on the access to justice services," revealing that Kigezi Sub-region with eight prisons has a population of 1,585 inmates of which 1,064 remain prisoners.

Hon. Justice Dr. Bamwine advised that prison visits be carried out before court sessions so that the accused persons can make informed decisions.

The Principal Judge asked the judicial officers to be good ambassadors and sensitize the public on reforms in the Judiciary.

"Go out and preach the gospel according to Small Claims Procedure, Plea Bargaining and Mediation,"he said.

Dr. Bamwine explained that the Judiciary decided to implement a case backlog strategy to reduce delays and eliminate case backlog and that planned court automation will get rid of opportunistic corruption.

"Judiciary's reputation is its most precious resource," said the Principal Judge adding that although there are rules in the offing to empower courts with more options, it is important for all stakeholders to change their attitude towards work. 

While responding to issues raised during the plenary held by stakeholders in the Justice System, Justice Bamwine said that staff gaps for judicial officers will be resolved once new personnel are recruited.

On the issue of furnishing Kabale High Court, the Principal Judge said that plans are underway to address it, beginning this Quarter (April-June 2018).

He informed the participants that more funds have been earmarked for court sessions as well adding that mobile courts are also being explored.

The exercise was attended by Judicial Officers, the Uganda Police Force, the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, Uganda Prisons Service and representatives from Legal Aid Service Providers as well as advocates.

Posted 10th, April 2018
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