The Legal Aid Innovation Conference (LAICON)

LAICON is an annual event and platform where best practices and innovations in legal aid.The platform fosters an ecosystem of progressive legal aid/access to Justice actors who can work on collaborative projects beyond the Innovations Conference. It provides a space for sharing progressive thinking and will enable key actors and stakeholders to recognise and implement innovations in legal aid service delivery, especially low-cost initiatives that increase efficiency in accessing Justice.

The Conference offers Legal Aid Service Providers (LASPs) and Innovators a platform to showcase their innovations and discuss the growing trends in enhancing Access to Justice

and Human rights. The first Conference’s theme was “Strengthening Collaborative Advocacy Platforms to Enhance Rule of Law, Legal Aid and Access to Justice for the Poor, Vulnerable and Marginalised in Uganda.” And the second, a hybrid event, was themed “Exploring New Innovations to Enhance Access to Justice amidst the COVID-19 Pandemic.”




This year’s second Legal Aid Innovations Conference 2020 (LAICON) was graced by the Chief Justice of Uganda, His Lordship Alfonse Owiny-Dollo. He spoke at length, about the innovations the justice sector have had to embrace as a result of the effects of the pandemic. He also tasks and gives recommendations to various stakeholders on how they can shift paradigms in mindset, to make access to justice a reality for all.

Gerald brought loads of experience and relatability to the room in this speech. One statement that resonated with everyone who attended was, ” You either innovate, or you die.”


  • As we delve into the discussions and sessions today, let us not only celebrate our achievements but also reflect on the challenges that lie ahead. The legal landscape is ever evolving, and our commitment to justice demands continuous adaptation and innovation. Together, we can shape a future where legal empowerment knows no boundaries and where the pursuit of justice is an inherent part of the human experience,

    These were the opening remarks from Gerald Abila, the Founder and Executive Director of BarefootLaw, at the annual Legal Aid Innovation Conference (LAICON) that happened on Tuesday, 12th December, 2023 at Kabira Country Club.


    It was a two-day event that culminated in the BFL@10 Gala on Wednesday, 13th December 2023. This year’s theme was “Celebrating a Decade of Accelerating Justice through Legal Innovation. What Next?” The conference goal was to bring together new and old justice innovators to reflect on their impact and deliberate on the future of justice in Africa. For the first time since its inception in 2017, LAICON explored justice innovations and practices in other countries besides Uganda, that is, Kenya and Malawi.


    The event consisted of four panel discussions including two with people who have benefitted from BarefootLaw’s services over the past ten years, justice innovators from Kenya, Uganda and Malawi, and institutions of Justice in Uganda. The discussions centred around the panellists different innovations and the how they hope to fill the gap within the justice system in their respective countries with their innovations.