Judges Return to School for Oil and Gas Studies

October 25, 2021by Extractives Baraza
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Supreme Court judges head for a session at the court on March 18. (Image Source: Abubaker Lubowa)

By: Stephen Otage

The Institute of Petroleum Studies Kampala (IPSK) says many senior judicial officers are gaining interest in courses in the oil and gas sector.

Speaking at their hybrid graduation ceremony with Uganda Christian University on Friday, Mr Patrick Ruharuza, the principal IPSK, said lately, they are graduating students with diplomas, degrees and master’s degrees in oil and gas studies, including judges, registrars and lawyers.

He said this is raising the number of Ugandans with special skills and knowledge to participate in the oil and gas sector.

“Over the last several years, we have trained judges, registrars and lawyers who are going to transform Uganda’s fortunes. The objective stretches beyond oil and gas. We are preparing leaders to lead the oil and gas space,” Mr Ruharuza said.

He explained that they are training future leaders in the energy space to equip themselves with knowledge in new technology, environmental health and safety as one of the means to promote local participation in Uganda’s oil and gas sector.

High Court judge Henry Kawesa, Ms Beatrice Stella Atingu, the registrar at War Crimes Division; senior state attorneys Sheriffah Nalwanga, and Racheal Guweddeko Namazzi, and Kasese resident state attorney Godfrey Oundo, are among the senior judicial officers in the cohort of 26 legal officers who got LLM in Oil and Gas.

Other notable lawyers who graduated include Mr Caleb Alaka, Mr Francis Kabonge Buwule, Mr John Fisher Kanyemibwa, Mr Godfrey Himbaza and John Boniface Kulu Idambi, the deputy director of public prosecutions in-charge of Rwenzori region.

Asked what motivated him to go back to study, Mr Idambi said last year when the Chief Justice launched the environmental courts, they were meant to arbitrate cases on environment, pollution and safety of workers, which requires people knowledgeable in industrialisation, and pollution.

Justice Kawesa said he decided to return to school so as to ensure the oil and gas sector is better.
“ Arbitration of oil and gas disputes will require expertise and as a judge, I now have the expertise to handle cases of oil and gas and I encourage young people to come and study,” he said.

Source: Daily Monitor

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