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Koboko CM Court Sensitizes Refugees
Mr. Solomon Muyita with HW Peter Gukiina during the sensitization on new court initiatives at the Koboko Chief Magistrate Court

KOBOKO: On Wednesday (September 25, 2019),several refugees and their leaders gathered at Koboko Chief Magistrates Court for a sensitization on new court initiatives all aimed at improving access to justice for vulnerable persons.

The refugees, mainly from Lobule Refugee Camp, led by Mr Swalleh Abdallah, a Refugee Welfare Committee officer, thanked the courts for sensitizing them on how they can benefit from the justice system.

Lobule Camp accommodates to 5,350 refugees who have been settled in eight villages.

The court in charge,Magistrate Grade One, HW Peter Gukiina, said such interactions are necessary to demystify court operations to court users.

He urged those present to become ambassadors in their different places.

Mr Solomon Muyita, the Judiciary Senior Communications Officer, explained to the participants the different court initiatives in place to improve access to justice. These included Plea Bargaining, Mediation and Small Claims Procedure.

During the question and answer session, Mr Paul Gavana asked for a court within the camp. Others asked for the re-operationalization of Maracha Court to save them from moving long distances to access court services.

It was explained that the courts had embraced using of mobile courts as one of the ways to bring services closer for refugees. HW Gukiina added that while many courts had been gazetted,the courts do not have adequate personnel or resources to deploy them.

Mr Robert Amaga, on the other hand,  said he always dreaded court believing if he attended any session he could easily get arrested, charged and then remanded but the session had enlightened him.

Some of the court users complained about the lack of proper furniture for both the Court staff and users and the deteriorating Koboko court structure. Water seeps through the cracks and a portion of verandah has caved in, power supply to the court hall has been affected while most locks on the doors do not work which compromises security of the court.

The sensitization follows up on a meeting between the courts and Lobule camp leadership and is supported by the Justice Law and Order Sector and United Nations Development Fund.

Posted 26th, September 2019
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