Courts to shut down for a month over Coronavirus

The Chief Justice Bart Katureebe has issued an order suspending all proceedings in Ugandan courts for a period of one month over the Coronavirus pandemic.

President Museveni on Wednesday gave a directive in which all gatherings were banned for a period of one month over Coronavirus.

In regards the matter, the Chief Justice has in a circular to his deputy, all Justices, Magistrates and judiciary staff, all proceedings in court are suspended for the next 32 days.

“All court hearings and appearances are hereby suspended for the period of 32 days with effect from March 20, 2020. For cases at the stage of submissions, the respective courts may advise the counsel/ parties to file written submissions,” said Katureebe.

He says that during the period, prisoners and those on remand will not be presented to court and that where possible proceedings may be conducted using video link.

“All execution proceedings are hereby suspended for the same period of time except where attachment has already taken place. Courts will continue to handle certificates of urgency and taking plea for serious cases and bail applications. Only the applicant and their lawyer or in the case of bail application, the sureties will be allowed in court.”

According to the directive judicial officers will continue with being on duty but there will be no open court appearances during this time whereas all conferences, workshops and foreign travels for judicial officers have been banned.

“In addition to the above guidelines, sanitizers and other preventive measures have already been put in place. Digital thermometers are also being purchased and will be deployed at various court premises.”

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