district authorities have expressed loss of confidence in the Office of the
Solicitor General because of consistent loss of court cases, which has plunged
the district in a financial crisis. They
now want government to allow them to hire private lawyers to handle their
They accuse officers from the Solicitor General's office of among others
misadvising and misrepresenting the district, incompetence and gross negligence
of duty. According
to them, officers at regional office in Mbale specifically, the Head of the
region, Peter Masaba and another identified as Erick Lumbe always advise the
district to taken on court cases even when they know they can’t win.
Budaka district is struggling with a court order
to reinstate and compensate two staff who were irregularly dismissed from
service six years ago. In 2013, the
Budaka District Service Commission terminated the services of Patrick Namenkere,
the then Budaka town council Treasurer and Constance Katooko, then Budaka District
Principal Human Resource Officer.
The duo was terminated on grounds of misconduct
and causing financial loss to the district. They ran to court to challenge
the procedures through, which they were terminated. Recently, High court
pronounced itself on the matter and ordered the district to compensate the duo
over Shillings 50Million, reinstate them to office and pay the salaries for the
time they have been out of office and costs of the suite.
Sam Mulomi, the Budaka District LCV chairperson,
says when they assumed office in 2016, they found the district grappling with
court cases, mainly involving civil servants who were irregularly dismissed
from office. He explains that the district council resolved
to go for an out of court settlement but the Solicitor General’s office in
Mbale insisted that he would win all the cases and declined to end the court
He says that the district will have to cough over Shillings 500M in
the recently concluded case, which would have been settled at only Shillings 20M.
in: “We found Budaka…
Cue out:…meet these costs”//
now wants the solicitor General’s office to meet the costs awarded to the
people who sued the district. He also wants district to be allowed to recruit
private lawyers to avoid such messes.
//Cue in: “I have planned…
Cue out:…our local government”//
Kefer Samuel Mubalya, the Budaka District
Speaker, says there is a likely move by the Regional Solicitor General who sits
in Mbale to continue dragging the district in court case with intentions of siphoning
money from the already financially ailing district.
to Mubalya, the district advised the Solicitor General to handle the case out
of court since they knew they would lose the case but he insisted on going to
court. He said this is the third case
Budaka district has lost even after resolving they be handled out of court.
//Cue in: “Negotiated with these…
Cue out:…in courts”//
Abdul Karim Mulekwa, the Budaka town Council
councilor and Chairperson of the committee that was assigned the duty of
resolving cases out of court, says the complainants had agreed to compensation
of Shillings 20 million but the Solicitor General’s office rejected the
According to Mulekwa, the district has never won
any court case, which points to incompetence of the officers from the Solicitor’s
//Cue in: “They told us…
Cue out:…every other day”//
Frank Mwoya, the Kamonkoli Sub County councilor
recalls a case where the Sub County was sued and the ruling made in the absence
of their legal representative from the Solicitor General despite being
//Cue in: “They sued Kamonkoli…
Cue out:…of that money”//
Topachio, a State attorney in the Solicitor General's office in Mbale, who
handled one of the court cases, dismissed accusations of connivance leveled
have never connived with anyone because we represent the interest of government.
Local administrative units are part of government, but as you know court is
like a football match you go thinking you will win but eventually end up losing,"
Efforts to reach Peter Masaba, the Head of the
region for a comment were futile since he could neither pick nor return our
Kirinya Ayubu is the URN Bureau Chief of Elgon/Bukedi Sub Regions . He holds a Bachelors Degree in Mass Communication from Islamic University in Uganda and a Diploma in Computer Science and Information Technology from the same University.