A section of public interest lawyers at Makerere University who offer free legal services to the underprivileged communities have called upon Parliament to pass the National Legal Aid Bill, 2022.
The lawyers under their umbrella body, the Public Interest Law Clinic (PILAC), said that the Bill once passed will help create a voice for the vulnerable Ugandan population.
The Bill seeks to define government’s obligation in relation to the provision of legal aid to vulnerable persons.
It also seeks to create Justice Centers and designate them as the government agency responsible for providing legal aid on behalf of it, repeal the Poor Persons Defense Act, to make provision for the grant of legal aid services to indigent and vulnerable persons and others.
Sandra Oryema, the Head of Legal Aid Unit at PILAC said that there is need to place focus on having the community access University premises to receive a number services freely since it is hard for them to maneuver solely.
“We realized that People with Disabilities (PWDs) are the most vulnerable people in our community yet they also need to know how they can fit in the framework of the legal aid.
“We partnered with Disability Law and Rights Center in pursuit of this’,” she said
“This group of people has been facilitated this morning which has helped them to know their rights, whether they are violated and where they can run to in case they have any dissatisfaction”. She added
Speaking at the same function, Dr. Damalie Nagita Musoke, the Coordinator of Disability Law and Rights Center revealed that they usually sensitize People with Disabilities (PWDs) to ensure their inclusivity in the community in such days and beyond.
“As PILAC marks 10 years, there is an ongoing ‘Know your rights campaign’ and in this we’ve brought important stakeholders in Disability Rights activism to equip PWDs with relevant information for them to make a shift in their livelihood before the law and inclusion.