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Judiciary Constitutes Panel to Hear Case Challenging Delayed Electoral Reforms :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Judiciary Constitutes Panel to Hear Case Challenging Delayed Electoral Reforms

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The matter stems from an application by Professors Frederick Ssembebwa, Fredrick W. Jjuko and Kituo Cha Katiba asking the Supreme Court to find the Attorney General, William Byaruhanga guilty of contempt of court for failing to implement electoral reforms as directed by the court.
28 Mar 2019 17:35
A Court Document Showing the Panel that will hear the case

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A panel of seven Supreme Court justices has been constituted to hear an application challenging the Attorney General’s failure to introduce electoral reforms as directed by the Supreme Court. 

   

The justices are Stella Arach Amoko, Eldard Mwangutsya, Faith Mwondha, Lillian Tibatemwa, Richard Buteera, Jotham Tumwesigye and Augustine Nshimye. 

A March 28th, 2018 statement by the Supreme Court Deputy Registrar, Godfrey Opifeni shows that the judges will start hearing the matter on April 24th, 2018.    

The matter stems from an application by Professors Frederick Ssembebwa, Fredrick W. Jjuko and Kituo Cha Katiba asking the Supreme Court to find the Attorney General, William Byaruhanga guilty of contempt of court for failing to implement electoral reforms as directed by the court.  

In its judgment on the Amama Mbabazi 2016 presidential elections petition, a panel of nine Supreme Court justices led by the Chief Justice Bart Katureebe directed the Attorney General to implement ten orders so as to improve electoral democracy in the country.

They included among others reviewing the time for holding fresh elections in case a presidential election is nullified, the use of technology and nature of evidence, unequal use of state owned media, late enactment of relevant electoral legislation, and the involvement of public officers in political campaigns among others.    

The justices hoped that the reforms would level the electoral ground by the 2021 general elections so as to avoid anomalies that characterised the previous polls. The justices directed the relevant organs of government to enact the reforms within two years from the judgment.   

However, through their lawyers of Ladislaus Rwakafuuzi, Tusasirwe and Company Advocates and Kirunda Wasige Advocates, the applicants say the top government organs including Parliament and Executive have failed to enact the proposed reforms.    

“A declaration that as an advocate who has failed to implement the decision of this honorable court, the sitting Attorney General is not fit to occupy the office of the Attorney General”, the application reads in part. 

Adding that, “appropriate measures be put in place to compel the respondent to comply with implementation of the said orders, including an order that the executive shall not present any other legislative business until the orders aforesaid have been complied with”. 

In 2016, Mbabazi contested for presidency as an independent candidate and garnered 1.4 percent of the total votes cast. He sued the Electoral Commission and the Attorney General for non-compliance with the laws governing elections in Uganda.  

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