Gerald Bareebe Members of Parliament on Thursday said they would not pass the Administration of Justice Bill unless it specifies how judges performance will be assessed. The MPs on the Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Committee said due to lack of performance appraisals, some judges performance has been defective. They complained that most judges adamantly absent themselves from work while others spend more than a year to make a ruling. The MPs were on Thursday meeting judicial officers led by the secretary to the Judiciary, Ms Dorcas Okalany, and the Chief Registrar, Ms Flavia Anglin, to discuss the sectors policy statement for the financial year 2009/2010. The MPs argued that if a comprehensive assessment mechanism is introduced in the Judiciary, it will improve efficiency in service delivery and consequently reduce the high case backlog. The public is interested in having an assessment of judicial officers, Mr Abdul Katuntu (Bugweri County, FDC) said. You cannot have a judge sitting on a case for the whole year. The problem is that a Judge or a magistrate is law himself and no one can ask him why he has not delivered a ruling. That is why we need an assessment to root out this problem. He added: If you bring that Bill [Administration of Justice Bill] with no clause on how judges can be assessed, we shall throw it out. Shadow Attorney General Erias Lukwago said laziness by some of the judges and corruption is hindering the delivery of justice. To offset this, Mr Lukwago said, there should be an evaluation mechanism. However, Ms Okalany assured MPs that technocrats in the ministry, who are currently drafting the Bill have been told to include an appraisal system for judges. She also said the Judiciary has already contracted a consultant to develop a mechanism of assessing the Judges performance. We have given terms of reference to a consultant who is currently developing mechanisms on how we can assess Judges performance, Ms Okalany said. We are operating a result oriented management and we must have evaluation system.