The meagre budget that is allocated to the judiciary by government is undermining the performance of the sector, the head of the Commercial Court has said.
Justice David Wangutusi said unless the budget is increased, which is currently at 0.04 percent of the national budget, development shall be curtailed to the detriment of the people.
He was speaking at the opening a two day workshop on mediation at Margarita Hotel in Lira town.
“Research has shown that in countries with good court systems, investors show up, but when the judiciary is wreaked, investors are not interested” Wangutusi said.
He said an allocation of 4-4.5 % of the national budget to the judiciary would turn it to one of the best in Africa adding that also government needs to honour its commitment to improving remunerations of judicial officers and recruiting more staff.
He said court processes that take too long to be concluded erode investor confidence in investment.
Wangutusi noted that case backlog caused by a few judicial officers started increasing by 1997 as people became more aware of their rights in the Constitution.
"Case backlog has increased to around 150,000 to date leading to congestion in prisons and creating associated health hazardsˮ he said adding that only court annexed mediation can back roll the cases as compared to litigation.
Lira resident Judge, Lady Justice Winfred Nabisinde said it is the role of the judicial officers to deliver justice on behalf of the people and urged them to embrace mediation to quicken case disposal.