By Ramson Muhairwe
The First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for East African Affairs, Rebecca Kadaga has urged for an increase in pro bono services to ensure that justice is accessible to all, especially the vulnerable.
Kadaga, the first female lawyer to establish a private practice firm in Uganda, expressed her concerns about the prevailing financial disparities that hinder access to justice for many.
Speaking at the Female Lawyers Network annual dinner, attended by legal professionals from East African countries, Kadaga lamented the growing injustice resulting from a financial gap that disproportionately affects the less privileged.
She emphasized the alarming trend where justice seems to be a privilege for the wealthy, leaving the poor without recourse.
Kadaga said she believes that pro bono services offer a crucial opportunity to bridge the justice gap and alleviate the current backlog of 43,000 cases.
"By providing free legal services, lawyers can contribute to a more equitable legal system and empower those who are economically disadvantaged," she said.
Shifrah Lukwago, Commissioner of the Uganda Human Rights Commission, echoed the importance of pro bono work in fostering justice for all.
Female lawyers were also challenged to maintain a high standard of professionalism, including dressing decently in the execution of their duties.
Dr. Joyce Nalunga, President of the Female Lawyers Network, emphasized the importance of upholding dignity and respect in the legal profession.
Rebecca Kadaga took a step further by launching the network's digital laboratory, aiming to nurture female lawyers in the use of technology within their legal practice.
Mariam Mbabali, a member of the Female Lawyers Network, welcomed the initiative, highlighting its potential to empower legal professionals through digital tools.
The Female Lawyers Network, uniting both male and female legal professionals across the African continent, remains committed to bridging the gender gap in the legal sector