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FAT CATS, JUICY SALARIES: Here are the Most Highly Paid Officials in Uganda’s Judiciary & How Much They Earn Monthly

Frustrated Driver’s Boss Earns Shs22.5Million 

Chief Justice Alfonse Owiny Dollo, his deputy Richard Butera and Principal Judge Flavian Zeija. Courtesy Photos
First published on May 16, 2023 AT 17:36 


Every month, a Ugandan High Court Judge earns 95.7 times more than his or her driver, an analysis of the salaries of the top fat cats at the country’s judiciary indicates. The debate on this salary disparity was months ago occasioned by threats by a frustrated driver who said, in a viral recording, that he was pondering ramming his boss’ vehicle into a truck so that he could kill the judge and his bodyguard.

Reports indicate that the judge that Stanley Kisambira, a driver at the judiciary for the past 15 years, was thinking of ‘killing’ in an ‘intended accident’ is attached to the Mbale High Court.

The Pearl Times has gained access to the salary structure for the 2022-2023 Financial Year and we can authoritatively tell you that Kisambira would need to work for nearly 96 months to earn what the judge he was driving gets in just one month.

He would need 100 years to earn what the judge gets in just one year.

A judge of the High Court gets Shs22.5m a month, translating in Shs270m a year, while a driver’s salary is Shs235,000, translating in Shs2.82m a year!

While other factors like level of education and experience are used to determine salaries, the cost of living has been rising over the years and even drivers need to take their children to school and take care of their other needs and responsibilities – these require more than Shs235,000.

For this report, The Pearl Times brings to you the list of the most highly paid officials in Uganda’s judiciary and how much they take home every month and year:

Chief Justice Alfonse Owiny-Dollo earns Shs26.5m monthly, translating in Shs318m a year while Deputy Chief Justice Richard Butera earns Shs25m a month, translating in Shs300m annually. Principal Judge Flavian Zeija earns Shs24m a month, translating in Shs288m a year.

A Justice of the Supreme Court earns Shs23.5m a month, translating in Shs282m a year; a Justice of the Court of Appeal’s monthly pay is Shs23m, translating in Shs276m annually; while A judge of the High Court gets Shs22.5m a month.

The Chief Registrar earns Shs20m every month, translating in Shs240m annually; a Registrar earns Shs13.8m a month, translating in Shs165.6m a year; a Deputy Registrar earns Shs12.5m a month, translating in Shs150m a year; while an assistant Registrar earns Shs10.5m, translating in Shs126m a year.

A Chief Magistrate earns Shs9.8m a month, translating in Shs117.6m annually; a Senior Principal Magistrate Grade One earns Shs8.59m a month, translating in Shs103m a year; while a Principal Magistrate Grade One earns Shs6.5m a month, translating in Shs78m a year.

A senior magistrate Grade One and a Senior Principal Magistrate Grade II earn Shs5.6m a month each, translating in Shs67.2m a year each.

At Shs5.2m, the salary of a Grade One Magistrate is similar to that of a Principal Magistrate Grade II, translating in Shs62.4m a year.

The salary of a Senior Magistrate Grade II is Shs3.5m, translating in Shs42m a year while that of a Grade II Magistrate is Shs3m a month, translating in Shs36m a year.


Salaries of most highly paid judiciary officials per month:

  1. Chief Justice – Shs26.5m
  2. Deputy Chief Justice –  Shs25m
  3. Principal Judge – Shs24m
  4. Justice of the Supreme Court – Shs23.5m
  5. Justice of the Court of Appeal – Shs23m
  6. Judge of the High Court – Shs22.5m
  7. Chief Registrar earns – Shs20m
  8. Registrar – Shs13.8m
  9. Deputy Registrar – Shs12.5m
  10. Assistant Registrar – Shs10.5m
  11. Chief Magistrate – Shs9.8m
  12. Senior Principal Magistrate Grade One – Shs8.59m
  13. Principal Magistrate Grade One – Shs6.5m
  14. Senior magistrate Grade One – Shs5.6m
  15. Senior Principal Magistrate Grade II – Shs5.6m
  16. Grade One Magistrate – Shs5.2m
  17. Principal Magistrate Grade II – Shs5.2m
  18. Senior Magistrate Grade II – Shs3.5m
  19. Grade II Magistrate – Shs3m

Meanwhile, a judiciary driver, who earns Shs235,000 per month has got into trouble for complaining about his salary and for threatening to ‘kill’ his boss, a High Court judge, who earns Shs22.5m per month. (See Details Here).

Some of the names of the Judiciary’s most paid officials are also on the list of Uganda’s 25 most highly paid government employees. (See List Here).

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