President Museveni has asked the judiciary to prioritize disposing off business issues to avoid tainting the country’s reputation
“Uganda’s competitive advantage should not be interrupted by slow commercial justice. Start with business issues because slow justice can give Uganda a bad reputation. Investors are setting up factories in Uganda because we have ensured security. We have got a strong Army,” he said.
The President made the call at State House, Entebbe while presiding at the swearing in ceremony of 15 judges.
The sworn judges include three for the Court of Appeal/Constitutional Court and 12 for the High Court.
The ceremony was attended by among others, Prime Minister, Dr Ruhakana Rugunda and former Premier, Kintu Musoke.
The judges of the Court of Appeal/Constitutional Court, Justice Irene Mulyagonja and Monica Kalyegira Mugenyi who took the oath recently were also introduced to the President. Justice Kibeedi Muzamir took the oath of allegiance to the Republic of Uganda and was also introduced to the President.
The 12 Judges of the High Court who took the oath Tuesday include; Esta Nambayo, Isaac Muawata, Isa Sserunkuuma, Vincent Emmy Mugabo, Philip Odoki and Immaculate Busingye.
Others are Suzan Abinyo, Byaruhanga Jesse Rugyema, Boniface Wamala, Jane Okuo Kajuga, Jean Rwakakooko and Victoria Nakintu Nkwanga Katamba.
Mr Museveni asked the judges to ensure the security of persons and property adding that murder and rape should be treated as serious cases.
“I congratulate the new judges upon their appointments. I am pleased to preside over the swearing in of judges. I represent the freedom fighters and we want a minimum package of equal rights. Secondly, I represent the elected people. We must work and we cannot accept impunity,” he said in a statement.
He observed that 68 percent of the population in Uganda work only for the stomach. He reiterated the need to transform wananchi to participate in the money economy. He asked them not to treat village thieves lightly and the judicial officials must treat them strictly because they affect the society.
The President also noted that bibanja owners are being evicted saying that they need to be assisted.
He vowed never to allow the bibanja people to be chased away adding that they are the primary partners of the NRM in the struggle.
On the economy, Mr Museveni observed that Ugandans are beginning to produce for the national money economy and cited the example of five million tons of maize that Uganda produces annually but only one million tons are consumed in the country with the rest being exported.
He stressed that it was vital to ensure that Uganda remains competitive.
“Under NRM, the country now has 5,000 industries up from 80 in 1986 when the Movement took political power,” he said.
Turning to remuneration of judicial officers, the President said that their recent pay increment to was the beginning of “good things to come.”
Chief Justice, Bart Katureebe lauded the President for enabling the appointment of judges and for the recent enhancement of the salaries of judges.
Attorney General, William Byaruhanga congratulated the newly sworn-in members of the bench and asked them to ensure and uphold justice for all people.