Kampala-The Principal Judge Mr Yorokamu Bamwine has ordered Local Council (LC) officials to have registers for proper record keeping of the cases they adjudicate for easy tracking.
Speaking to LCs from Western and Central regions in Kampala, Justice Bamwine said they are so careless that they don’t record cases at village level which makes it difficult to trace the cases.
“You find the area LCI handling a case without recording, the evidence is not properly written and kept well. Others write in exercise books which they use for lighting fire the following day,” Mr Bamwine said.
He said it is essential to have proper books for record keeping to follow cases and save time in both villages and other courts so that in case of appeal, the appellate court does not have to summon witnesses again to testify afresh.
“We want you to record whatever is said there,” the judge said adding that they do not have record of proceedings in their local courts.
“You are supposed to sit as nine committee members to make a judgement but in most cases, the LC1 sanctions a judgement in absence of the other members [on false pretence] that he is powerful and decide for others which is null and void,” Justice Bamwine said.
He warned them against listening to only one party in a case and making judgement based on one-sided evidence, saying it’s unfair and reflects neglect of their duty as adjudicators.
“The LCI (Local Council One) is very important to record witnesses but in most cases they judge without listening to others and no records made,” Justice Bamwine said.
He asked them to stop involving non-LC members to decide cases.
He warned them against charging extra money for settling cases.
“You always say that justice is for the rich but it’s you promoting the rich in the country by charging extra money outside the law,” Mr Bamwine said.
He urged government to invest in judicial officers starting from Local Councils.