Addressing the media on Tuesday, Chief Registrar Sarah Langa Siu said that the money is not being claimed due to the ignorance of litigants regarding their rights on bail money and the experience they go through while in court and prison.
The judiciary is stuck with 26 Billion Shillings bail cash.
According to records, as of July 30 2020, the money had accumulated to over
Shillings 26.4 billion within 10 years.
Addressing the media on Tuesday, the Chief Registrar of Courtsof Judicature Sarah Langa Siu said that the
money is not claimed due to the ignorance of litigants regarding their
rights on bail money and the experience they go through while in court and
Bail cash is refundable after a case is finalized whether it is a conviction or acquittal. The litigant should have met other bail conditions including
reporting to the court. .
The application is submitted alongside the original bail document,
an original receipt for paying cash bail and sometimes an original
acknowledgement receipt from the Uganda Revenue Authority.
Langa says that all judicial officers should remind people to claim their bail cash upon the conclusion of the case. She also says that anyone eligible for a refund must write to the court
that granted him or her bail and that bail refund is only refunded through the
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According to Langa, the judiciary plans to put in place a mechanism
where the bail money can be refunded to the litigant through mobile money.
Langa explained that there is no limited time within which one can
get back their bail money.
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The High Court registrar Samuel Emokor says that in case the litigant dies, the family through the estates administrator can apply and get the money.
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The Executive Director of the Legal Aid Service Provider's
Network-LASPNET, Sylvia Namubiru says the biggest challenge is ignorance of the
law by the accused persons. She says the judiciary should publicize the
information for people to know that they are entitled to their bail cash once
the case is closed.
"Rarely will someone leave their land title or passport with the
court because they know this is a treasure, but for money, perhaps they don't
attach a lot of value and that is why they leave it there," says Namubiru.
She said that some accused persons may forfeit their bail cash
knowing that they defied bail conditions. Nambiru asked the court to publish
names of people and amounts owed to them in bail cash and set a deadline when
the money should be claimed.