A panel of six justices of the Supreme Court has unanimously dismissed with costs an appeal filed by the Attorney General, Electoral Commission and six Members of Parliament challenging the Constitutional Court decision which nullified elections in new constituencies in 2006, seven months after the general elections.
The affected constituencies included; Apac Municipality; Sheema Municipality; Ibanda Municipality; Nebbi Municipality; Bugiri Municipality and Kotido Municipality.
Legislators affected by the 2018 court decision were; Hon. Basalirwa Asuman, Hon. Dr. Tumwesigye Elioda, Hon. Ocan Patrick, Hon. Lokii Peter Abrahams, Hon. Rwaburindore Bishanga Tarsis and Hon. Hashim Sulaiman.
The five justices of Constitutional court ruled that the above constituencies had not been gazetted under proper procedures by the Electoral Commission yet.
In the decision delivered on Thursday by Justice Esther Kisakye, Stella Arach Amoko, Paul Mugamba, Ezikiel Muhanguzi, Percy Tuhaise and Mike Chibita, they ruled that there was no proof on record to prove that the process of creation and demarcation of the said constituencies was completed as required by the law.
“Also, the lawful process of filling vacancies that fall vacant in Parliament under Article 81(2) is supposed to be initiated by the Clerk to Parliament who is charged with the obligation of writing to the Electoral Commission notifying it within ten days after the vacancy occurred to organize a by election within sixty days after the vacancy occurred. There is no evidence on record to show that the Clerk to Parliament ever wrote to the Electoral Commission informing it of any,” Justice Mike Chibita said.
The six MPs who had joined as cross appellants were struck off on grounds that they were not party in the proceedings of the lower court where this appeal arises from.
“In my view, I would hold that unless a party took part in proceedings in the Constitutional Court and following this participation, the party was aggrieved by the decision of that court, he or she does not have locus whatsoever before this Court,” Chibita noted.
Court has granted Kwizera (petitioner at the constitutional court) half costs at the lower court as well as costs at the supreme court.
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