BY JOACKIM KULE
The judiciary in Uganda is in the process of establishing a High Court in Kasese district in an attempt to extend enough judicial services nearer to the residents.
The revelation was made on Monday by the Resident Judge for Fort-portal Regional Circuit, Hon. Vincent Emmy Mugabo, while presiding over the Open Court day at Kasese District Chief Magistrate’s premises.
The Open Court Day that was organized under the theme, “Access to Justice Through our Initiatives,” was aimed at sensitizing the community of Kasese on the dangers of Sexual Gender Based Violence in their areas.
Hon. Mugabo revealed that the government’s initiative to consider establishing another High Court in Kasese is based on the distance that people travel from their respective areas to Fort-portal, the population and size of the district.
He, however, explained that soon, the judiciary would gazette the Kasese High Court so that it is included in the subsequent Financial Year budgets.
He also revealed that many cases being handled by the High Court in Fort-portal from Kasese are majorly related to land conflicts and gender based violence including rape, defilement and murder.
In his remarks, the Kasese District L.C.V Chairperson who had earlier requested for the establishment of a High Court in Kasese pledged that his council was very willing to offer a piece of land on which court would be constructed.
The Rwenzori East Deputy Regional Commander, SSP Celestine Tukahirwa, reported that due to the big size of the district, they lack enough courts hence leading to failure to implement the detention policies and subsequently dismiss cases reported because the prosecutors are few.
Mr. Amon Atwine, the Substantive DPC for the Uganda Prison Services across the district revealed that the rate at which people commit crimes in the four policing divisions in Kasese is alarming.
According to him, Government Prisons in Kasese district are currently having over 1,800 prisoners of whom 22 were recently committed to the High Court while another 68 is yet to be committed.
He appealed to the judicial services to expeditiously work on some petty cases as a means to decongest the prisons.