The Legal Aid Service Providers Network has got a new leader! A familiar face in the legal aid field, Ms Sylvia Namubiru Mukasa has been appointed the Network’s new Executive Director, succeeding Mr. Richard Nsumba Muganzi who held the position for one year after serving as the National Coordinator for the same organization for over six years.
Sylvia brings extensive experience spanning for over 15 years in the legal field, five of which were undertaken in the judiciary of Uganda as the Judicial Officer, while the other 10 years, she worked as Manager/ Administrator/ Trainer with Human Rights NGOs and those inclined towards enhancing access to justice for the vulnerable.
As the new Executive Director at LASPNET, Sylvia will head the programs and the public outreach arms of the organization. She will be the major link between LASPNET and all its partnerships and stakeholders as well as take charge of identifying new partnerships to ensure the longevity and improvement of the organization’s undertakings.
Before joining LASPNET, Sylvia was the Director of Programmes for the Centre for Justice and Innovations where she led and provided oversight to the Center’s Programmatic work and Program team development in research as well as directing advocacy that focuses on rule of law, human rights, justice administration and. In addition she was responsible for quality, control and evaluation. She has also held the position of Executive Director at the Uganda Law Society where she oversaw, managed, supervised and coordinated staff and programmes of the Legal Profession in Uganda.
In her institutional representative capacity on several JLOS task force and working groups, she has contributed and facilitated ongoing legal and policy reform efforts of JLOS especially on Justice for children including development of diversion guidelines, Legal Aid policy, Anti-corruption strategy , to mention but a few . She is to the capacity development of both formal and informal justice system actors for improved service delivery and enhanced access to justice especially for the poor and marginalized.
Apart from having a wealth of experience in the legal profession, Sylvia is a holder of a Master’s degree in Development studies, Majoring in Human rights, Gender, Conflict Resolution and Social Justice Perspectives with a specialization in Human rights from the International Institute of Social Studies of Erasmus University in the Netherlands; has a Bachelor’s Degree in Law from Makerere University Uganda; a Diploma in legal Practice from the Law Development Centre Kampala Uganda; a Diploma in Human rights and democratization from Copenhagen Business school Denmark. She holds several certificates relating to institutional Management and Administration, human rights and access to justice obtained from National and international trainings.
Sylvia joins LASPNET at an opportune time when the organization is embarking on pushing for the passing of the National Legal Aid Policy to influence pro-poor policy reform in access to justice, as well as developing a critical think tank on legal aid service delivery. She will be very significant in steering the network towards achieving these milestones. She was welcomed by the board of directors and Staff of LASPNET secretariat on 8th April 2015, and officially assumed office on 9th April 2015. In her remarks, she put across the need to work as a team in order to uphold the Network’s mandate of enhancing access to justice for the vulnerable. “If it is a human body, each of us should assume a part on this body and utilize it to function to the best of their ability in order to work in unison. Strategic planning also presents a wonderful opportunity to engage the members of our board and learn more about their hopes and goals for our organization”, she said. The Board Chair, Mr. Samuel Nsubuga welcomed her on behalf of the Board and called on the team to give her support as she settles in her new position. “We shall always endeavour to support you and the entire team so that we take on from what Richard (former E.D) left off and even make it better”, he said.
LASPNET warmly welcomes Ms. Sylvia Namubiru Mukasa in her new portfolio as Executive Director and wishes her a successful tenure as she soars the organization to greater heights.