Following the elapse of the ninety days ultimatum to government, prosecutors around the country have resumed their indefinite strike.
In July, prosecutors under their umbrella body, Uganda Association of Prosecutors (UAP) voted to suspend their strike over pay for ninety days pending government’s promise to solve their grievances.
However, according to their president David Baxter Bakibinga, following efforts to get feedback from government but in vain, they decided to resume with the sit down strike.
“When there was fourteen days to the elapse of the ninety days, we sent a reminder to government but up to now we have not got any tangible feedback,”Bakibinga told the Nile Post in a phone interview.
He said that their efforts to communicate to the cabinet sub -committee appointed to work on their issues and the Minister for Justice and Constitutional Affairs, Maj.Gen. Kahinda Otafiire yielded nothing.
Prosecutors are by default government lawyers in criminal cases but according to the current salary structure under DPP, the lowest ranking prosecutor (State prosecutor) earns a monthly gross pay of Shs644,963 whereas the highest ranking prosecutor at the rank of senior principal State attorney, gets a gross monthly pay of Shs2.1m.
These says it is unfair to them as they handle complicated cases like terrorism, corruption and murder.
Bakibinga however said no amount of words would sway them this time to abandon the strike as was done in July when they were promised that their grievances would be worked upon.
“This time we will not resume work without anything tangible done. We shall wait for them to consult as we go on with the strike. We will go back after government acting on our demands.”
In courts that we visited, Magistrates adjourned the cases whereas many people were seen stranded outside courtrooms.
The prosecutors’ industrial action comes barely a month after judges also put down tools over pay but vowed to resume with their strike by December 11th if government fails to honour its promise.
Police spokesperson Asan Kasingye recently said that the judges strike affect police as cells were fool to capacity prompting some of the suspects to escape from custody.