Prosecution Progress: DPP Appeals for More Staff to Combat Case Backlog

During the 7th Joan Kagezi Memorial Lecture at Kololo Independence Grounds, Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Jane Frances Abodo highlighted the urgent need for additional prosecutors to tackle the growing backlog in prosecution of cases.

Abodo emphasized the importance of empowering the prosecuting body with adequate staff to handle cases swiftly and efficiently to effectively combat crime in the country.

“We grapple with understaffing. We need more prosecutors if we are to be effective and efficient. Judiciary is recruiting more judicial officers and this has led to a situation where we have more magistrates than prosecutors,” Abodo stated, addressing President Museveni.

She proposed that the number of prosecutors should exceed that of magistrates, allowing for seamless prosecution while others handle case preparations and advisement.

Currently, there are 405 prosecutors serving in 95 districts, leaving 34 districts without any office presence, resulting in a 30% national coverage deficit.

Abodo stressed the importance of addressing this challenge promptly, requesting consideration for recruiting at least 455 prosecutors to meet the required staffing levels.

Acknowledging competing government priorities, Abodo suggested phased recruitment over financial years until the necessary numbers are met.

Additionally, Chief Justice Alphonse Owiny-Dollo emphasized the need to strengthen the capacity of justice institutions to effectively combat crimes such as terrorism and trafficking.

In response, President Museveni emphasized the importance of proper budgeting to address the staffing needs of the Office of the DPP, ensuring sustainable recruitment and management of resources.

While acknowledging the challenges, Museveni reassured that the government is committed to addressing urgent needs while maintaining a focus on sustainable development

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