President Museveni has appointed Supreme Court judge, Richard Butera as a member of the Judicial Service Commission.
Butera was on Thursday sworn-in at a function held at the High Court premises on Thursday.
Speaking at the swearing- in ceremony, the Judicial Service Commission chairperson, Justice Benjamin Kabiito hailed his appointment as being timely.
“We have no doubt that you will be a worthy replacement given the wealth of your experience and service. You join the commission at a time when we are undertaking a comprehensively review of its structure,” Kabiito said.
The Judicial Service Commission chairperson asked the new member to join the commission’s efforts to make a case for increasing the number of judges and judicial officers as one of the ways to reduce case backlog.
“The demands for an Appeal and Constitutional division at the court of Appeal, the appointment of a full complement of 82 judges, chief magistrates and more grade one magistrates remain unmet and this accounts for the growing caseloads on judicial officers and case backlog.”
Kabiito revealed that the commission has proposed to the Ministry of Justice and Constitutional that the Judicial, Law and Order Sector needs to commission a study on what is the optimum human resource requirement of the judiciary covering judicial officers at all court levels and the staff complement to fully and effectively discharge its mandate in terms of the country’s population.
Speaking at the same function, the acting Chief Justice, Alphonse Owiny- Dollo added his voice onto justice Kabiito’s comments on increasing on the number of judges and other judicial officers for the judiciary.
“Increasing the number of judges should be in the interest of the people of Uganda. Increasing the number of judges should not be debatable. It is like debating whether to need doctors in hospitals,”Dollo said.
Speaking about the new member of the commission, the acting Chief Justice said he will add a wealth of experience to the Judicial Service Commission.
In a separate interview, Justice Butera said he is ready for the job ahead of him noting that he will ensure he represents well the judiciary on the commission.
Butera replaces Justice Jotham Tumwesigye who recently retired as the judiciary representative to the Judicial Service Commission.
He will however still continue serving as justice of the Supreme Court.
Established under Article 146 of the Constitution, the Judicial Service Commission is a constitutional body mandated to recruit judicial officers and regulate their conduct.