The Chief Justice of Uganda, Hon. Justice Alphonse Chigamoy Owini-Dolo reminded all judicial officers in Uganda to use their powers properly within the confines of the law.
He also reminded them that it is their constitutional duty to ensure that justice is available to all those seeking justice in Uganda and that they have a responsibility under the constitution to deliver transparent sentences.
Justice Dollo, who spoke at the Benedicto Kiwanuka Memorial Lecture at the High Court in Kampala on Thursday, said as the judiciary continues to learn from the late Chief Justice Benedicto Kiwanuka Drawing inspiration and motivation from his work and service, he reminded all judicial officers of their constitutional duties and responsibilities towards all those seeking justice in their actions and decisions in Uganda.
He added that exercising good judgment is a responsibility and means taking responsibility for one’s own actions, including a willingness to be transparent and allow others to observe and evaluate one’s performance.
“Judicial officers are accountable not only internally to the judiciary but also externally to the public whom we serve. Article 126(1) of the Constitution of Uganda succinctly provides: “The judicial power shall derive from the people and shall be administered by the courts established under this Constitution and in the name of the people and in accordance with laws, values and norms. “And the people’s wishes,” he said.
He affirmed that judicial accountability requires that the actions, inactions and decisions of judicial officers are made in the interest of the people. This also requires a satisfactory explanation of their decisions and commitments to the people.
“Finally, judicial accountability calls on us to use judicial powers correctly and within the confines of the law. Every judicial officer has a responsibility not only to make the right decisions, but also to clearly explain the reasons for the decisions and ensure that decisions are carried out transparently and in accordance with the law. “Judge Dollo said.
However, he also warned other state organs that judicial accountability must be considered in the context of strict compliance with judicial independence, which requires all arms and institutions of the state to respect judicial decisions and support judicial actions.
“It is our duty in this country to protect and defend the rule of law. I have seen state institutions commit sacrilege when interpreting court decisions. It is wrong and goes against the rule of law,” he said.
Likewise, the keynote speaker, retired Justice Jotham Tumwesigye, cautioned judicial officials that the rule of law does not discriminate between the rich and the poor. A lack of rule of law can lead to chaos, with marginalized groups suffering the most.
“The people of Uganda must ensure that what happened to the late Chief Justice does not happen again. The judiciary should address inequalities within the justice system. It should focus on addressing the root causes of injustice,” he said.
At the same time, 21Yingshi September marks the sixth commemoration of Chief Justice Benedicto Kagimu Mugumba Kiwanuka, who tragically disappeared 51 years ago during the reign of Gen Idi Amin Dada. He was martyred defending the rule of law and fundamental freedoms of the Ugandan people.
Chief Justice Benedicto Kiwanuka, the first Ugandan national to hold the high office, was last seen alive 51 years ago. The cause of his death was the issuance of a writ of habeas corpus directing the military authorities to bring a British citizen before the courts as required by law.
Soon after, he was brazenly and violently abducted from his room. He was never seen again from that day. Chief Justice Benedicto Kiwanuka was martyred defending the rule of law and fundamental freedoms of the people of Uganda.
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