16th Triennial Commonwealth Magistrates and Judges (CMJA) Conference
Uganda hosted the 16th Commonwealth and Judges Association (CMJA) triennial conference from 10 – 15, September 2012 at Speke Resort Munyonyo in Kampala.
The CMJA was founded in 1970 originally being called the Commonwealth Magistrates’ Association. The current name was adopted in 1988. The aim and objectives of the Association include; advancement of the of the law by promoting the independence of the judiciary; advance education in the law, the administration of justice, the treatment of offenders and the prevention of crime within the Commonwealth and lastly, to disseminate information and literature on all matters of interest concerning the legal process within the various countries comprising the Commonwealth.
The Commonwealth Magistrates and Judges Association is a membership based organization that draws membership from all the 54 commonwealth countries and the 10 dependent territories. Its membership is open to all judges, registrars and magistrates in the commonwealth. Justices of peace are associate members of the CMJA. The Uganda Judicial Officers Association (UJOA) is a full and active member of the CMJA with its membership consisting of Judges, Registrars and Magistrates.
The 16th triennial conference was held under the theme: Justice for Everyone: Myth or Reality? This international conference is held every three years where issues of constitutionalism, the rule of law, independence of the judiciary and good governance are discussed. About 500 judicial officers from all members of the commonwealth are expected to attend this conference that will be held at Munyonyo Commonwealth Resort, Kampala.
In the Africa region, the CMJA conference has previously been hosted in Zimbabwe (August 1994), South Africa (November 1997) and Malawi (August 2003). The last CMJA triennial conference was held in Kuala Lampur, Malaysia in July 2011 where Uganda was nominated to host this year’s conference. His Lordship Benjamin Odoki, the Hon. Chief Justice of Uganda having been very instrumental in developing the Bangalore Principles that have shaped the image of judicial systems in commonwealth jurisdictions accepted the honor bestowed on Uganda by the CMJA to host this conference.