Chief registrar enrols 80 advocates as judges strike bites

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Judicial officers voted last month to go on strike over poor working conditions

Despite the countrywide industrial action by judicial officers over welfare issues, the Chief Registrar, HW Gadenya Paul Wolimbwa, on Friday (August 25, 2017) enrolled over 80 new advocates at the High Court in Kampala.

This is one of the biggest groups of new advocates to be enrolled at the same time in Judiciary’s history.

HW Gadenya congratulated the newly enrolled advocates for having successfully completed their undergraduate and postgraduate law studies.

He reminded them that the day of enrolment is the beginning of their professional career in law, “which if practiced well can be very rewarding”.

“You must observe the highest degree of integrity, professionalism and impartiality as officers of court. Clients will only trust you with their cases only if you are men and women of integrity,” said HW Gadenya.

He further cautioned the newly enrolled advocates that their first duty is to the court, to ensure that justice is not only done but seen done.

“Sometimes, counsel’s duty to court may be in conflict with his/duty to the clients. In such circumstances, counsel’s duty to court takes precedence,” he said.

The Chief Registrar called for the bridging of the gap between the law and the public, urging the advocates to continually teach and sensitize the public and students about the law as well as offering pro-bono services to indigent litigants.

The new attorneys were further urged to prepare cases well to assist the courts to expeditiously resolve cases and eliminate case backlog.

“Value working a lasting legacy in law by promoting the highest standards of legal practice founded in honesty, integrity and professionalism,” said HW Gadenya.

The Chief Registrar said the Judiciary is doing everything possible to ensure that the courts remain open as negotiations for improved terms and conditions of judicial officers go on.

In Uganda the legal profession is not fused; an advocate is an enrolled lawyer to the bar and can address court whereas a lawyer cannot address the court as he is not enrolled. Only advocates have a right of audience before the court.

According to the Advocates Act, every advocate and every person otherwise entitled to act as an advocate shall be an officer of the High Court and shall be subject to the jurisdiction of the High Court.

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