Inspectorate of Courts
The Inspectorate of Courts is situated at the High Court of Uganda premises, Plot 2 the Square, just above the Constitutional Square in Kampala.
The Inspectorate of Court is currently manned by 3 Registrars namely; the Inspector of Courts, the Deputy Inspector of Courts and the Assistant Inspector of Courts. They are assisted by 8 support staff namely; the Personal Secretary, Office Supervisor, Research Assistant, Records Assistant, 2 Drivers, Process Server, and Office Attendant.
MANDATE OF THE INSPECTORATE
The mandate of the Inspectorate is to monitor and evaluate the performance of Judicial Officers and other staff and court facilities. In the performance of the above mandate, the Inspectorate performs the following functions:-
i) Investigate and evaluating of complaints from the public.
ii) Conducting regular court inspections.
iii) Evaluating the performance of Magistrates and other judicial staff.
iv) Identify performance bottlenecks that impede effective delivery of justice.
v) Analyzing court returns to determine the efficiency of court operations.
vi) Producing and disseminating information to the public about the operations of the courts.
· Complaints go to the Principal Judge or to the Chief Registrar of the High Court or straight to the Inspectorate ( there is no official Complaints Desk/Reception)
· Inspections are carried out as and when a complaint ismade or when funds are available
1. At the Inspectorate the Complaints are recorded by the Office Supervisor and forwarded to the Inspector of Courts
(Complainants who make verbal complaints are advised to put them in writing)
2. The Inspector of Courts allocates some to the Deputy Inspector and the Assistant Inspector.
3. In the absence of the Inspector the Deputy Inspector acts.
4.The Secretary types all communication going out either to the complainant, judicial officer or advocate and copies to the Chief registrar.
5.The records assistant files all complaints.
6. The process server delivers all letters.
7. Office attendant cleans/tea
1. From the Complaints the Inspector of Courts identifies those urgent courts that\r\n have to be inspected
2. The Inspector handles or delegates
3. In the absence of the Inspector the Deputy Inspector acts
4. The Secretary types all replies going out either to the complainant, judicial officer or advocate and copies to the Chief registrar
5. Inspectors carry out inspection with the Research Assistant.
6. Drivers manage the vehicles during inspection
7.Inspection report with recommendations forwarded to the Chief registrar for action
1. The Chief Registrar orders the Inspectorate to inspect the court in question
2. The Inspector handles or delegates
ACTIVITIES VARIOUS FORA INVOLVING THE INSPECTORATE
A total of 1004 complaints were registered during the period 1st July 2013 to 30th March 2015 out of which 962 were investigated and addressed conclusively leaving 42 for follow up.
TABLE SHOWING COMPLAINTS REGISTERED FROM 1ST JULY 2013 TO 30TH MARCH, 2015
i) INSPECTION,MONITORING AND SUPERVISION
a) Strengthened monitoring and supervision.
The\r\nInspectorate of Courts has been strengthened by deploying two more Registrars\r\nto carry out supervision and monitoring interchangeably whereby there is\r\nconstant presence of a Registrar at the Centre. The three Registrars are now able to conduct country wide\r\ninspections and routine visits to Courts in the country. A number of general surveys in different\r\nRegions have been carried out aimed at establishing the levels of\r\nadministration of Justice. Routine\r\nand on-spot inspections continue to be done throughout the country.
Note: Inspections carried out this year are less compared to the previous year. This has been caused by lack of funding and vehicles to carry out inspection despite the increased number of Inspectors.
ii) JLOS INTEGRITY COMMITTEE (JLOSIC)
The Inspectorate is part of the JLOS\r\nIntegrity Committee formerly known as the Judicial Integrity Committee has its\r\nSecretariat in the Inspectorate of Courts. \r\nThe JLOSIC carried out its annual Nation Wide Tour 2014 in November,\r\n2014. The report is in advanced stages.
The\r\nSecretariat suffers the usual constraint of financial support to organize this\r\nactivity since it is funded 100% by JLOS.
Funding\r\nfor this activity is controlled by JLOS just and the Judiciary does the\r\nbudgeting. The Judiciary experienced problems\r\nduring the 2014 JLOSIC Nation Wide Tour whereby funds released did not\r\nadequately cover all items and most of the items were underfunded. The problem\r\nof funding was also experienced during the JLOSIC Retreat held at Imperial Golf\r\nView Hotel in Entebbe from 10th – 11th February, 2015\r\nwhereby funds released were less than funds budgeted.
We as the Inspectorate have to engage the Chairperson,\r\nJustice Tumwesigye on the future of the JLOSIC secretariat and the need to\r\nrevive the original JIC which was funded the Judiciary.
Ø JLOS Anti-Corruption Strategy.
The Judiciary Anti-corruption strategy was\r\nlaunched on 4th October, 2013 as a tool in the fight against corruption.
Strengthening\r\nof the Complaints Handling System/Mechanisms
· JLOS\r\nComplaints handing framework was introduced.
· Information\r\nDesks Introduced.
· \r\nIntroduction\r\nof Complaints Registry.
Ø \r\nPeer Committees:
The Committees were introduced some\r\ntime back and the results are average. Need to rejuvenate this Committee\r\nthrough sensitization.
iii) JLOS\r\nINSPECTORS FORUM JOINT INSPECTIONS BY JLOS INSPECTORS
The\r\nInspectorate is part of the JLOS Inspectors Forum whose membership comprises all\r\nJLOS institutions and has its Secretariat in the Inspectorate of Courts. It was initially chaired by the Inspector of\r\nCourts but currently it is chaired by Hon. Justice H. Wolayo (Resident Judge\r\nSoroti), and the Co-Chair is Hon. Justice Elizabeth Jane Alividza, J (Criminal\r\nDivision) who were former Inspectors of Court.
The\r\nforum has done the following:
Ø Development\r\nof Inspection Guidelines and Checklist. The said\r\ndocuments are now in place to guide Inspectors while on inspections. The guidelines were developed by the\r\nForum with support from JLOS.
In\r\n2012 Joint 2013 the Forum carried out Joint inspections. However, in 2014 Joint Inspections were not\r\ncarried out due to lack of funding and/or busy schedule of the Judges. The\r\nForum only carried out a pre-testing exercise of the JLOS Inspection\r\nGuidelines. The Report was made and sent to JLOS.
Preparations\r\nto have the Joint Inspection by JLOS Institutions are on. The necessary\r\nrequisitions have been sent to the Ministry of Justice for funding.
iv) JUDICIARY\r\nDISCIPLINARY COMMITTEE
The\r\nInspectorate is part of the Judiciary Disciplinary Committee which deals with cases\r\nof Discipline against Judicial Officers and members of Staff among others\r\n(Established in 2012).\r\nThe Committee is chaired by Justice of Supreme\r\nCourt and sits once a month to handle disciplinary cases. All departments are\r\nrepresented on this Committee. The JDC lacks representation from the Court of\r\nAppeal to replace the late Justice Byamugisha.
Ø \r\nCases Registered and handled by the\r\nJudiciary Disciplinary Committee in 2015
The\r\ncommittee has no serious issues of case backlog as matters are handled as soon as\r\nthey are registered. Currently there are only 4 cases pending.
Complaints Handling Framework
Anti Corruption Strategy
Inspectorate of Courts
Courts of Judicature, Plot 2, The Square , Kampala
P . O. Box 7085, Kampala, Uganda
Telephone: + 256 (0) 414 347 312
Email: inspectorate [at] judicature.go.ug