Disclosure in civil matters in Uganda is a crucial element in order to have a fair trial. The law provides that when instituting a civil case in court, it is imperative that every pleading must be accompanied by a summary of evidence to be adduced and a list of documents, among others. Parties to the suit are required to attach the different documents they intend to rely on in court. These are then served on each party to the case to avoid being ambushed during the court proceeding. The law provides for scheduling conferences to take place, and it is during these conferences that the parties are required to make full disclosure on all the documents they intend to rely on and share them.
During the conferences, parties disclose all material facts agreed, issues agreed, and list down all witnesses to be called during the trial. This also helps the court to save time as it gives parties enough time to carry out preparations. Given the recent developments in the world, technology has become part of us. At the time the laws of evidence were enacted; the use of technology was not considered; therefore, disclosure through technology was not considered. In recent times, however, the laws governing electronic transactions were passed, that is, the electronic transactions Act and Electronic Signature’s Act, which provides some legal framework for electronic records to be disclosed electronically or in other formats that may be produced as long as their authenticity can be proved.
In conclusion, disclosure is a fundamental principle in civil proceedings because it helps in giving both parties adequate time to carry out their preparations and to avoid wasting court time during the proceedings.