Uganda Cooperative Alliance (UCA) has signed a memorandum of understanding with Puliida Uganda limited for Puliida to offer transactional legal assistance to cooperatives.
With this partnership which will last for two years, Puliida will offer legal information support to UCA and its member Cooperatives, training for cooperators and lawyers willing to present cooperatives in court cases, carry out research development and conduct field legal clinics where logistically possible.
Puliida is also expected to help in dissemination of cooperative legal information through traditional and new media platforms.
Speaking at the signing ceremony at the UCA office in Kampala, Ivan Asiimwe, the UCA General Secretary said that cooperatives have been complaining about continuously losing court cases, mainly because Cooperatives have not been receiving the right legal advice hence the need to contract a legal body that will be helping the cooperators in all legal matters.
“The purpose of this MoU is to help cooperators with legal information and capacity building for them to be able to walk the right legal path,” Asiimwe said.
Moses Mugisha, an official from Puliida, speaking at the same ceremony said that the reason cooperatives have been having issues with court cases is because they have not been following the proper legal procedures in procuring contracts hence the lawyers once in court would find themselves with little evidence in which they can defend the cooperators.
“This is what we are going to help them with. We are going to make sure the cooperatives have the guidance to do proper documentation before they enter into any transaction,” Mugisha said.
He added that some lawyers that have been representing cooperators, though they have the experience and the right legal training lack the element of understanding of how cooperatives operate hence the need for training.
“Our job will be to train UCA members and willing lawyers who are going to offer litigation services to cooperators so that they understand what is needed in court for cooperative issues,” he added.