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Drama as Justice Baguma Forwards Mabirizi's Case File to Ssekaana

Justice Emmanuel Baguma, the Deputy head of Civil Division said he didn't see any reason for withdrawing those cases and there were no minutes from Ssekaana to show why the matters were withdrawn.
The Petitioner Male Mabirizi.

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Drama ensued on Friday evening at the High Court Civil Division as the Judge who was allocated to hear the case in which city lawyer Male Mabirizi seeks to block the recruitment of judicial officers ordered that the file goes to Justice Musa Ssekaana.

 

Justice Emmanuel Baguma, the Judge who was allocated the file, on Friday evening said that he had perused through the file and made a number of observations.

According to Baguma, he had observed that a similar case was filed twice by Mabirizi on different occasions and withdrawn twice also on different occasions in May 2021  after being allocated to Ssekaana who is the head of the Civil Division.

 

As such, Baguma said he didn't see any reason for withdrawing those cases and there were no minutes from Ssekaana to show why the matters were withdrawn.

 

Accordingly, he said he had written to the Registrar of the Court Jamson Karemani to forward the files back to Ssekaana to avoid duplication. But Baguma found it courteous enough to read his decision to the parties since they had showed up in court before the file went to the Registrar.

  But this didn't go down well with Mabirizi who told the Judge that it is true he had withdrawn the cases after learning that they were at first allocated to Ssekaana and he couldn't tell him the reasons as to why he withdrew them. 

 

Mabirizi added that even if this third case file also goes back to Ssekaana, he will also withdraw it because he can't dare appear before him.

  But talking to URN after court, Mabirizi said that he can't risk appearing before Ssekaana because at one time he threatened to throw him out of court and send him to prison.  

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Luganda Audio

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This was in 2019 when Mabirizi and eleven opposition leaders led by Erias Lukwago were challenging the failure by Electoral Commission Chairperson Justice Simon Byabakama to relinquish his powers as the Court of Appeal Judge.

But the proceedings which were conducted under a tense environment due to the nature of the language saw Justice Ssekaana refer to Mabirizi as rubbish and since then the city lawyer has refused to ever go back to his court saying they may fight from there. 

 

The Attorney General's representative Jackie Amusugut was happy with the decision of court saying that the Judge had rightly guided them.

The file that has been sent to Ssekaana is of a case filed on May 21, 2021 in which Mabirizi sought an injunction restraining the Judicial Service Commission from proceeding with the process undertaken and decisions it has reached in shortlisting, interviewing, appointing and recommending to the President for appointment of applicants for Judicial Officers. 

 

He asked court to restrain the  Commission, until the determination of the main case which is challenging the legality of the process being followed to conduct the recruitment.

On February 1 2021, the Judicial Service Commission issued an external advert number one of 2021 in which it sought to fill positions of a Justice of Supreme Court, Justices of Appeal, High Court Judges, Deputy Registrars, Assistant Registrars, Chief Magistrates and Magistrates Grade One.

However, according to Mabirizi, the shortlisting was done contrary to universally known practices of shortlisting as there was use of  secretive non-verifiable method that led to a piecemeal shortlisting based on nepotism and other corruption-related practices and some of the interviews were scheduled to start on  May 31th 2021 and others in the month of June.

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