The Justice, Law and Order Sector (JLOS) says it has launched a countrywide programme to train Local Council (LC) courts on case adjudication under their mandate in order to reduce the backlog of cases in court.
Ms Sam Wairagala, the JLOS deputy senior technical adviser, said since the election of the LCI and LC2 chairpersons in 2018, government enacted the law establishing LC courts. He said every district now has a desk officer responsible for training the LC court members under the supervision of the Chief Magistrate.
“We have a law which creates the LC courts with an executive of five members. They deal with simple cases like land boundaries and noise pollution but do not handle cases such as defilement or pass out sentences,” he said on Sunday.
Mr Wairagala was among the judges at a three-day innovations competition organised by The Hague Institute of Innovations in Law in Kampala at the weekend. He said the creation of the LC courts is a reform in the JLOS sector to improve access to justice.
Mr Edgar Kuhimbisa, the JLOS information, communication and technology officer, said, they are planning to extend video conferencing services under the e-justice programme to Masaka District so that more people can access justices
Ms Phiona Wall, the Vice President of Uganda Law Society, welcomed the innovations.She explained that the winners of Hackathon who designed a virtual alternative dispute resolution app, created a solution to the case backlog in courts while the second runners up created a solution which addresses child marriages due to poverty.
On Friday, the Hague Institute of Innovations in Law, held a three-day contest for innovators to develop web-based solutions to access justice following the Covid-19 pandemic where law practitioners were denied access to their workplaces and clients.
Ms Rita Ngenzi, the lead innovative agent at The Hague Institute, said they organised the Hackathon because the virus proved that it is necessity to create alternative means of delivering justice remotely.