Chief Justice Bart Katureebe has announced the start a new campaign aimed at rooting out corrupt judicial officials and restore public trust in the Judiciary.
Core to his anti-graft campaign is to turnaround the perception of the Judiciary being one of the most corrupt public institutions in Uganda.
Katureebe said he had sent out letters to individuals like lawyer Peter Muliira, former Supreme Court Justice George Kanyeihamba, and the President’s Press Secretary Tamale Mirundi, asking them to present evidence to back their recent allegations that judicial officers were compromised.
“We need to move and tackle issues of alleged corruption in the Judiciary…furnish me with the evidence in your possession so that the necessary course of action is taken in accordance with the law and the constitution,” Justice Katureebe wrote, in part, in the letters.
He adds that all responsible citizens should not only speak out about the perceived malpractice in the Judiciary, but should come out and help in finding a solution to the problem.
Once a prima facie case is established against a Judicial Officer, his/her name will be forwarded to the Judicial Service Commission for disciplinary action, Katureebe adds.
A subsequent press release from the Judiciary shows that a number of reforms will be done including having a Supreme Court judge to head the Inspectorate of Courts, a department of judiciary that deals with corruption issues as opposed to Deputy Registrar of the High Court.
Further, the Judiciary states that it is in the process of setting up Customer Care telephone numbers and feedback Hotlines for the public to make general inquiries and also report errant court staffs who ask for bribes.
The public has however, been cautioned against equating wrong court decisions which can simply be appealed, to corruption.