The former Entebbe Municipality Mayor Vincent De Paul Kayanja has
appealed against the ruling by the court that dismissed a petition he filed
against his rival Fabrice Brad Rulinda.
In January, the Electoral Commission declared Rulinda an Independent candidate
winner with 6,703 votes against Kayanja’s 5,576 votes.
Kayanja, who contested on the Democratic Party-DP ticket, petitioned the High
Court seeking to overturn the victory of Rulinda on grounds that there was
falsification of results in 74 polling stations.
The court also heard that the elections were not free and fair because there
was violence and the involvement of the army at the Wakiso District Tally
Centre, failure to use electronic display system as required by law to enable
transparent tallying of results among others.
Last month, Justice Isaac Muwata dismissed Kayanja’s petition with
costs on grounds that it was incompetent since the affidavits accompanying the
petition were based on hearsay.
Kayanja through his lawyers of Alaka and Company Advocates has
listed five grounds to challenge Justice Muwata's decision in his appeal filed
before the Court of Appeal in Kampala.
Kayanja contends that the learned Judge erred in law and fact when he dismissed
the petition on trivial, presumptive grounds and mere suspicions of his
evidence thereby occasioning a miscarriage of justice.
"The learned trial Judge erred in law and fact in his finding
that the Appellant's/Kayanja's affidavits accompanying and in support to the
petition failed the admissibility test thereby occasioning a miscarriage of
justice", reads the appeal in part.
According to Kayanja, he also faults Justice Muwata for having reportedly
misdirected himself in holding that the affidavits were based on hearsay and
that if parts of the same were severed, the remaining parts could not sustain
the standard of proof in election petitions. To him, this also resulted in a
miscarriage of justice.
"The learned trial Judge erred in law and fact in his holding that
the petition remained unsupported and failed for non-compliance with statutory
requirements of affidavit evidence and thereby occasioning a miscarriage of
justice,” it adds.
Kayanja further notes that it was wrong for Justice Muwata to
penalize him to pay costs in the circumstances of the case.
Kayanja wants the Court of Appeal to set aside Muwata's orders and
go ahead to determine his petition on its own merits.
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Alternatively, Kayanja wants the matter to be referred back to the High Court
for trial before another Judge.
The case is among more than 30 appeals arising out of the 2021 elections and
High Court decisions are yet to be fixed for hearing.