Lawyers of Wameli and Company Advocates have petitioned the Attorney General of the Republic of Uganda seeking to be listed among the essential service providers during this 42-day lockdown.
In his recent address on Covid-19 Standard Operating Procedures, President Museveni issued a list of essential workers who will be operating during the lockdown. The list excluded the Lawyers.
The address was followed by guidelines made by the Ministry of Works and Transport providing a list of categories of people who will be allowed to drive private vehicles, lawyers excluded, still.
The Lawyers from Wameli have thus asked the Attorney General and line authorities to find means of including them on the list of essential workers.
These asserted that the Chief Justice permitted the continuation of court operations with set measures to curb the spread of the virus.
“It is worth noting that on 7 June, 2021, the Hon. Chief Justice gave directives and/or revised contingency measures by the Judiciary to prevent and mitigate the spread of Covid-19 in which he inter alia directed on the operational of courts, but essentially to ensure that justice is effectively delivered without fail during the lockdown,” the statement reads in part.
These added that if their request is not considered, it will render the Chief Justice’s directives less important since they will not be able to attend to court assignments.
In the Chief Justice’s directives, Lawyers are allowed to represent their clients in bail application, hearing of matters of urgency as well as filing applications like habeas corpus but in observance of all Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs).