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Pader People Welcome 'Sidelining' of Lawyers in New Small Claims Procedure

Akung who was speaking on behalf of the business community claimed that lawyers enjoy cheating the poor by encouraging them to chase court hearings that often have no future.

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Locals in Pader district are happy with the new small claim procedure court that leaves lawyers out of the court cases.

The chairperson of the Pader business community, James Akung, told our reporter during an interview on Thursday that involving lawyers in court proceedings is not only expensive, but also causes enmity between the complainant and the respondent.

Akung who was speaking on behalf of the business community argues that lawyers enjoy cheating the poor by encouraging them to chase court hearings that have no future.

Meanwhile, Pader resident district commissioner, Dusman Okee while launching the small claim procedure also known as the people’s court in Pader district on Thursday said that he is happy with the new innovation by the judiciary of Uganda.

He said that small claims procedure will solve a lot of his work that mostly entails solving issues of debtors.  Okee encouraged the registrar of the small claim procedure to also simplify other formalities in the court for example having judges dress ordinarily like the local people so that the clients can feel comfortable attending the court.

Jackeline Kagoya who sits at Nakawa chief magistrate court says that the judiciary decided to design the small claim procedure, an innovation that offers a straightforward answer to monetary civil cases within 14 days.    According to Kagooya, this initiative will reduce case backlog and also costs spent by locals in pursuing court cases.Cue in: “case backlog has”… cue out: …”in small claim”

Meanwhile, Deo Akuguzibwe, one of the officials overseeing enrollment of the small claim procedure in the different districts of Uganda appealed to lawyers not to feel bad with the initiative but instead consider it as an opportunity to chase bigger matters.

Pader district has 206 cases that have stayed in court pending judgement for more than two years, Civil cases are while 56 and 150 criminal cases.

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