Popular Kampala lawyer, Caleb Alaka, has been barred from representing anyone in the General Court Martial as long as Gen. Elly Tumwiine is the chairperson of the court.
Gen. Tumwiine yesterday expelled Alaka from the General Court Martial in Makindye where he had gone to represent the former Army Chief of Staff, Brig. Nakibas Lakara.
Alaka last appeared before the General Court Martial on November 24th as part of a team representing jailed opposition leader, Dr. Kiiza Besigye. During the hearing, Alaka and fellow lawyer, Elias Lukwago, were briefly detained and charged with contempt of court after they challenged the legality of Besigye's trial in the Court Martial.
Gen. Tumwiine told Court that following his release, Alaka boasted in some sections of the media that a lawyer is capable of beating a judge and getting away with it. Tumwiine said that because of that comment Alaka is not fit to appear before the General Court Martial. He warned the lawyer not to return as long as he chairs the Court.
Alaka's client, Brig. Nakibas Lakara, is facing charges of abuse and embezzlement of army funds.
Lakara rejected the Court Martial's offer of a court-appointed lawyer to represent him. He told court that he had paid Alaka a considerable sum of money and will not look for alternative legal counsel.
Caleb Alaka rose to fame in 2001 when he successfully represented the former Mbarara Municipality MP, Winnie Byanyima, in a law suit challenging her election. He also negotiated the amnesty for former rebel fighters of the Uganda National Rescue Front II.