The Chief Justice of Southern Sudan opened IDLO’s second round of procedural law training for the county court and high court judges of Southern Sudan on Monday, June 7. The training will take place over ten weeks, with 30 county court and high court judges participating and will cover civil procedure, criminal procedure, rules of evidence, and ethics.
The Chief Justice, the Honorable John Wuol Makec, in his opening speech noted the importance of procedure in the justice system, stating that judges must understand procedure before they can administer justice. The training is conducted by a team of highly experienced judges and lawyers from Uganda, including the Honorable Samuel Wambuzi, former Chief Justice of Uganda, former Supreme Court Justice Alfred Karokora, with facilitation by two senior officials from the Southern Sudanese judiciary. The judges in Southern Sudan face numerous challenges as Southern Sudan institutes a new common law legal system. Most of the judiciary were trained in Khartoum, with instruction in Arabic on the civil law and Shari’a law system of the north. The judges must now learn a new legal system, with laws drafted in English. This procedural law training aims to reorient the judges to the new common law system. IDLO conducted its first round of procedural law training for 23 judges of Southern Sudan from January through April of this year. A third round of procedural law training is anticipated to take place later this year, after which all county court and high court judges in Southern Sudan will have been trained on procedural laws. In the upcoming year, IDLO intends to train the judiciary on various Southern Sudanese substantive laws, building on the procedural law training. In addition, IDLO is working with the Southern Sudan judiciary to enhance legal resources, including developing a judicial benchbook and purchasing legal resources for court house libraries. IDLO will also accompany Justices from Southern Sudan on a study tour to the Ugandan Judiciary later this year.