Chief Justice Owinyi Dolo

Court Registrars Express Concerns About Disrespectful Behaviour from Judicial Officers

By The Insight Post Uganda

Mukono, Uganda

Court registrars play a pivotal role in the judicial system, responsible for supervising and coordinating the functioning of the Courts of Judicature to ensure that justice is delivered effectively and efficiently.

However, recent discussions among registrars have shed light on a concerning issue of the most disrespectful behaviour shown to them by fellow judicial officers at their respective stations.

This concern popped out during a four-day induction of recently appointed registrars, deputies, and assistant registrars held at Collin Hotel, Mukono.

The Chief Registrar – Sarah Langa Siu expressed concerns regarding the disrespectful manner in which some judicial officers interact with registrars. This issue has been a source of frustration among registrars who believe that their roles are often undermined by certain judicial officers.

“From the earlier discussions I have had with my team, judicial officers, especially the research magistrates, tend to only associate with the judges rather than the registrars. They don’t attend their meetings, sign in attendance books, and submit monthly reports to them,” Sui highlighted.

Registrars at courts are tasked with several critical responsibilities, including directly supervising and coordinating the functioning of the Courts of Judicature. 

Their primary goal is to ensure that justice is delivered in accordance with the mission of the Judiciary. This involves overseeing judicial officers under their circuit and managing the staff within their station.

Chief Justice

In response to the concerns raised by the court registrars, Chief Justice Alfonse Chigamoy Owiny-Dollo emphasized the importance of registrars taking charge of their areas of jurisdiction.

“Make sure you are fully in charge of your area of jurisdiction and invest sufficient time and interest to make the work move,” Dolo stated.

If the research magistrate is dealing with a legal issue, they talk to the judge. But for other administrative matters, they talk to the registrar.

However, this stresses the critical role of registrars in managing judicial officers and maintaining efficient court operations.

The induction consisted of 46 registrars, deputies, and assistant registrars who were appointed in the current and previous years. It aimed to equip these newly appointed officials with the necessary knowledge and skills to excel in their roles within the judiciary.

While closing the induction, Principal Judge Dr. Flavian Zeija appealed to registrars to adhere to the principles enshrined in the Judicial Code of Conduct.

He stressed the importance of upholding these principles in both their judicial duties and personal lives to achieve excellence in their roles. Zeija further emphasised the need for professionalism and integrity within the judiciary.

However, Insight Post Uganda has established from some of the judicial officers how disrespect among judicial officers within the legal system can have far-reaching and detrimental consequences.

Firstly, it can erode the trust and collaboration necessary for the efficient functioning of the judiciary. When registrars and other judicial officers are treated disrespectfully, it may lead to communication breakdowns, hindering the smooth flow of information and coordination in court operations.

Additionally, such disrespectful behaviour can negatively affect morale and job satisfaction among court staff, potentially leading to reduced productivity and commitment to their roles.

Moreover, it sets a concerning precedent for the legal community, potentially undermining the public’s confidence in the fairness and integrity of the judicial system. 

In the pursuit of justice, a respectful and cooperative atmosphere among judicial officers is essential to ensure the effective delivery of legal services and maintain the credibility of the legal system as a whole.


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