Court of Appeal Backlog Stands at Over 8,000 Cases- Report

The Court of Appeal performance report for the second half of FY2022/23  indicates that the court is still overwhelmed by a backlog of 8,079 pending cases.

The report further indicates that the court has been able to register 681 cases and accomplish 654 cases. Furthermore, the report indicates that by the end of June 2023, criminal appeals creamed the backlog with 3,156 cases followed by Civil appeals which stood at 2,383.

According to the head of the Court of Appeal,  Justice Richard Buteera, there is a need for interactions with the judicial stakeholders for the people the court works with to know how they operate and how their work schedules output affects the people whose cases they handle.

"We welcome proposals on how different ways we could together improve our performance," said Justice Buteera.

The Justice of the Court of Appeal,  Justice Kiryabwire also implored the lawyers for appellants and respondents to always come to court to support it.

"In this, they should also always be prepared," advised Justice Kiryabwiire.

During the meeting, the quality of lawyers that the Judicial Service Commission recruits was a point of concern as raised by the Court of Appeal's Justice Irene Mulyagonja.

" We need to look at the quality of lawyers we are recruiting both at the bench and the bar as this affects the services of the courts. The quality of advocacy is something we are all grappling with both as Courts and lawyers," said Justice Irene Mulyagonja.

Nevertheless, the Court of Appeal's head Justice Buteera thumped up the proper handling of lower court records, a signal that the Court of Appeal has exhibited over time.

To tighten the nuts of the Court's performance,  the Chief Registrar,  Sarah Langa Siu pronounced that quick expedition of cases will be enhanced by the persistent increment in the judicial officers especially after the move has been passed by Parliament.

"Before the Attorney General is a request for an amendment to increase the number of Justices of the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal to 21 and 56 respectively.  The principles in the amendment bill were already approved by Cabinet," said Sarah Langa Siu.

In her recent interview with NBS Television at her office situated at the Judiciary Headquarters in Kampala, the Chief Registrar asserted that by the end of FY 2022/23, case backlog in the Judiciary had reduced from 50,000 since the start of the new Law year to 40,000 cases.

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