Judiciary Signs Contract for Automation of Courts

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The Judiciary had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Judiciary and *Synergy International Systems Inc.*, the company contracted to spearhead the digitization of the courts.

Aptly called the *Electronic Court Case Management Information System’ (ECMIS)*, it will track the progress of all aspects of a case right from its filing to its conclusion.

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The contractor first had a brief interaction with the Chief Justice, Bart M. Katureebe, in his chambers to explain the scope of their works then proceeded to the MoU signing ceremony.

Judiciary’s Permanent Secretary/Secretary to Judiciary, Mr Pius Bigirimana, said he was happy that the journey to electronically manage court processes had started.

“You dont have to come to court for the filing, you can do it anywhere with just a click of the button on your gadget,” Bigirimana explained.

Mr Bigirimana says the new electronic system will minimise contact between the litigating public and court staff like the clerks, a move that will curb the real and perceived corruption in the courts.

He said the project billed at Shs9bn will start off with 19 courts before being rolled out to the rest of the country. Adding that in due course there will be an integration of systems in the Justice Law and Order Sector to improve service delivery.

Court of Appeal’s Justice Geofrey Kiryabwire, who also chairs the Judiciary Technology Committee, which is behind the innovation, said the project is part of the promises made by the Chief Justice when he assumed office.

“As a Judiciary we are very excited because it will make life easier for Judicial Officers,” adding that the public will now be able to inquire into court systems without neccessarily going to court. This he said would improve access to justice.

Justice Kiryabwire said the digitization would make Uganda one of the few countries in Africa to have such a system.

The contractors in conjunction with Sybyl, a local contractor, and National Information Technology Authority (NITA) will start installing and synching the system with the existing Court Case Administration System as a way of having ECMIS domesticated.

This will then be followed by training of personnel to manage the system.

The team also met with the Chief Justice, Bart M. Katureebe, and pledged to have the project ready for commissioning in May 2020.

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