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Africa is no stranger to injustices meted out on children. Child sacrifice, albino murders and child soldiers are common occurrences in sub-Saharan Africa. Children are a common sight in stone quarries, mines and commercial agricultural plantations despite the existence of legislation forbidding this. Africa’s civil and criminal justice systems are characterized by delays in delivering justice and hence denying justice to many. Children particularly suffer within such a system. As witnesses, they sometimes do not receive the protection they deserve. As accused, they are sometimes held in solitary confinement instead of rehabilitation centers. Poverty and rebel groups have further exacerbated the problem. The Lord’s Resistance Army, for example, has abducted many children into their ranks and forced them to become killers against their will. Though defeated from Northern Uganda, the rebel group has moved to Central African Republic where they continue to wreak havoc on children.

F. Zeija (*)

High Court of Uganda, Kampala, Uganda e-mail: This email address is being protected from spam bots, you need Javascript enabled to view it

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2017

S.H. Decker, N. Marteache (eds.), International Handbook of Juvenile Justice, DOI 10.1007/978-3-319-45090-2_3

An example of poor children in Uganda. Such children can hardly access justice

This chapter will provide an overview of justice from the perspective of when children get into the realm of the law either as transgressors or victims. This perspective includes both administrative and informal mechanisms of administration of justice in Uganda. Administrative aspects include instances of children getting into trouble with authorities in schools, foster homes and orphanages and may involve corporal punishments. Information was obtained from interactions with the police, children under detention and rehabilitation, officials in charge of a detention centre and rehabilitation home and officials from the Ministry of Education.

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