Regional court hears Uganda’s case on appointment of judges

The East African of Justice has heard a case challenging the government of Uganda for the alleged refusal to appoint more judges in the judiciary
The First Instance Division heard the case the president is accused of refusing to appoint judges of the Supreme Court, Court of Appeal and the High Court.
Ladislaus Rwakafuzi representing the applicant Simon Peter Ochieng and John Tusiime, told court that the President of Uganda had failed to respect the recommendation of the Judicial Service Commission following the resolution by the Parliament to increase the number of judges as stipulated in Article 138(1)(b) of the Constitution.
Rwakafuzi said that is a breach of the Treaty for the Establishment of the East African Community under Article 6 (d) and 7 (2) on fundamental principles of the Community and therefore its abuse of power.
Rwakafuzi stated that following the resolution by Parliament the number of judges of the Supreme Court should be increased from 7 to 11, the Court of Appeal from 8 to 15 and the High Court from 50 to 82 which has not been fully acted upon.
Representing Uganda’s Attorney General, Ms. Christine Kaahwa submitted that the appointment of Judges for the Supreme Court, Court of Appeal and the High Court of Uganda is in process and that there is no refusal by the President to appoint more Judges as it is alleged by the Applicant.
Ms. Kaahwa further stated that the process of the appointment of four Justices of the Supreme Court; seven Justices of Appeal; and sixteen Judges of the High Court is on-going following the conclusion of the interviews exercise in November, December 2014 and March 2015 respectively.
Ms. Kaahwa therefore asked Court to dismiss the case arguing that there is no breach of treaty.
The case is before Justices Isaac Lenaola Deputy Principal Judge, Lady Justice Monica Mugenyi and Justice Fakihi Jundu, and the judgement will be delivered on notice.

Story by Catherine Ageno