Child Rights Case Alert!!!
Today Justice for Children’s (JCT) Child Rights Advocate Pamellah Musimwa represented a juvenile who together with 24 others is being accused of “Participating in a gathering with intent to promote Public Violence, breaches of peace or bigotry as defined in Section 37(1) (a) (i) of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act, Chapter 9:23.” The matter could not proceed as JCT argued that before commencement of any proceedings it was in the best interest of the juvenile for the gallery to be cleared failure of which the juvenile’s record should be separated from that of the 24 adults who wanted to exercise their right to be heard in open court. JCT’s argument was based on the fact that Courts are mandated to ensure that every child who is going through the justice system is protected from trauma including upholding their right to confidentiality and privacy as envisaged by Section 5(5) of the Children’s Act and Section 197 of Criminal Procedure and Evidence Act. The ruling on whether the gallery should be cleared, or that the records should be separated to enable the Court to proceed with the hearing has been postponed to the 18th of January 2023.