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Lawyers block swearingin ceremony of new army MP

Lawyers block swearingin of new army MP

Aware that article 3(4) of the constitution empowers us, citizen of Uganda, to defend the constitution and in particular, to resist any person or group of persons seeking to overthrow the established constitutional order and to do all in our power to restore the constitution after it has been abrogate, lawyers have today filed the Constitutional Petition below in Constitutional court to bar the newly elected UPDF MP from being sworn in among others prayers. Read for your self their petition bellow:

THE REPUBLIC OF UGANDA

IN THE CONSTITUTIONAL COURT OF UGANDA AT KAMPALA

CONSTITUTIONAL PETITION NO. ……03…OF 2014

1. BIGIRWA MOSES
2. BUKENYA CHURCH AMBROSE
3. NTUWA JOHN BAPTIST ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: PETITIONERS

VERSUS
1. ATTORNEY GENERAL

2. ELECTORAL COMMISSION

3. COLONEL OULA INNOCENT :::::::::::::::::::::: RESPONDENTS

PETITION

(Under Article 3(4) and 137 of the Constitution, 1995 and the Constitutional Court (petitions for Declarations under Article 137 of the Constitutions, 1996 (Legal Notice No. 4 of 1996).

THE HUMBLE PETITION of Bigirwa Moses, Bukenya Church Ambrose and Ntuwa John Baptist of C/O Uganda Catholic Lawyers’ Society, Pope Paul (VI) Memorial Hotel Complex, Plot 7867, Nabunya Road – Rubaga. P.O. Box 14326, Mengo – Kampala, Uganda showeth as follows:

1. THAT your humble 1st petitioner is an adult male Ugandan, a registered voter of sound mind, an Activist for constitutionalism, a member of the National Executive Committee of DP, a former Parliamentary candidate in 2011 elections for Budiope Constituency, Kamuli District, who is affected and aggrieved by the unconstitutionality of the following matters being inconsistent with and in contravention with the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda.

2. THAT your humble 2nd petitioner is an adult male Ugandan, a registered voter of sound mind, an Activist for constitutionalism, a former councilor in Rubaga Municipality, Kampala District, who is affected and aggrieved by the unconstitutionality of the following matters being inconsistent with and in contravention with the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda.

3. THAT your humble 3rd petitioner is an adult male Ugandan, a registered voter of sound mind, an Activist for constitutionalism, a former councilor in Masaka Municipality, Masaka District, who is affected and aggrieved by the unconstitutionality of the following matters being inconsistent with and in contravention with the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda

4. THAT on Tuesday the 19th day of November, 2013, in accordance with rule 101(8) of the Rules of Procedure of parliament, the speaker directed the committee on Rules, Privileges and Discipline to investigate the conduct of Hon. David Sejusa, the Member of Parliament representing the UPDF, on allegations that without permission from the Speaker he had absented himself from fifteen sittings of the House and therefore eligible for dismissal from parliament.

5. THAT the said parliamentary committee acting on the orders of the Speaker summoned the said Hon. Sejusa to appear and defend himself but he failed to appear and instead sent his lawyers who contested the proceedings for various reasons.

6. THAT about one and half months ago a report of findings in the said investigations was made to the House and using the said report the Right Honorable Speaker of Parliament declared Hon. David Sejusa’s seat in parliament vacant on grounds that he had been allegedly found guilty of being absent from parliament without permission contrary to Article 83(1)(d) of the Constitution and Rule 101(10) of the Parliamentary Rules of Procedure.

7. THAT the same process is currently being used by the same committee to declare the seat of Hon. Kipoi Nsubuga Tony of Bubulo West Constituency vacant despite the fact that his lawyer, reported to the same committee that the said Hon. Kipoi was and is still bed ridden in a Kinshasa Hospital and could not appear to defend himself.

8. THAT as a Human Rights Activists and politicians, your humble petitioners who are well versed with the provisions of the constitution of Uganda and after getting advice from their Lawyer, Jude Mbabaali, they are aware that parliament is not a competent Court as envisaged under Article 86 of the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda to hear and determine any question whether a seat of a member of parliament has become vacant as it was done or it is being done in the above mentioned cases.

9. THAT therefore Rule 101(10) of the Parliamentary Rules of Procedure which provides that the Committee on Rules, Privileges and Displine upon investigations finds the allegation mentioned above proved, and the report of the committee is debated and tabled in parliament, the member of parliament shall, on the basis of that finding ceases to be a member of parliament contravenes Article 86 of the Constitution as it purports to give the powers to declare a parliamentary seat vacant to parliament yet the said powers were not given to parliament but to a High court Judge under Article 86 of the Constitution.

10. THAT basing on the above said unconstitutional declaration of Hon. Sejusa’s seat vacant, the Clerk to parliament wrote to the Chairman of the Electoral Commission requesting him to organize a bye Election to fill the purported vacant seat of Hon. Sejusa.

11. THAT as a result, the chairman and staff of the 2nd Respondent that ought to have known that the said declaration seat to be vacant was done unconstitutionally went ahead and set the 17th day of January 2014 as the date for the said by-Election.

12. THAT the said chairman and the Commander in Chief of the UPDF were warned about the unconstitutionality of the said by-election by the Uganda Catholic Lawyers’ Society in a letter dated the 15th day of January 2014 but they ignored the same and went ahead and held the by election.

13. THAT the said by-election was held on the 17th day of January 2014 and the 3rd Respondent was declared the winner to replace Hon. David Sejusa.

14. THAT the act of the 2nd respondent in organizing the said by-election as a result of parliament/speaker declaring the said parliamentary seat vacant without powers to do so is inconsistent with and or in contravention of Article 86 of the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda 1995.

15. THAT the outcome of the said by-election will be null and void as it is based on the unconstitutional actions of parliament/speaker.

16. THAT the Petitioner contends that:

(a) Parliament is not a competent Court to declare a parliamentary seat vacant within the meaning of Article 86 of the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda as it did in Sejusa’s case.

(b) The act of the Committee on Rules, Privileges and Displine in carrying out further probing and/or inquiries into Hon Kipoi’s purported absence from parliament without a justifiable reason with the view of declaring his seat vacant when the petitioner’s lawyer reported to the same committee that his client was still hospitalized in DRC and could not attend the hearings amounts to unjust and unfair treatment and is inconsistent with and or in contravention of Articles 28, 42, 44 and 86 of the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda 1995.

17. Your petitioners contend that the actions of the parliament are politically motivated to harass the said Honorable MPs and deprive them of their seats in parliament using unconstitutional means thereby setting a bad precedent that will be used to harass other MPs who are critical of government.

18. Your humble petitioners state that by reason of the matters stated above, Rule 101(10) of the Parliamentary Rules of Procedure is unconstitutional and should be nullified and /or declared null and void to the extent of its inconsistency with article 86 of the constitution.

19. Your humble petitioner state that by reason of the matters stated above, the actions of the parliament and all the resultant actions by the 2nd Respondent arising there from are unconstitutional and should be nullified and /or declared null and void to the extent of their inconsistency.

20. Therefore, Your petitioner prays that this Honourable Court be pleased to grant the following declarations and reliefs:-

(a) A declaration that Rule 101(10) of the Parliamentary Rules of Procedure is inconsistent with or in contravention of Article 86 of the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda and should be declare null and void.

(b) A declaration that parliament is not a competent Court within the meaning of Article 86 of the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda to declare a parliamentary seat vacant.

(c) A declaration that the declaration of Hon. David Sejusa’s seat as vacant by parliament/speaker was in contravention of article 86 of the constitution and therefore null and void.

(d) A declaration that the act of the parliament in carrying out further probing and/or inquiries into Hon. Kipoi’s absence from parliament without permission with the view of declaring his seat vacant as it was done in Hon. Sejusa’s case when his lawyer reported to the same committee that his client was still hospitalized in DRC and could not attend the hearings amounts to unjust and unfair treatment and is inconsistent with and or in contravention of Articles 28, 42, 44 and 86 of the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda 1995.

(e) A declaration that the election of the 3rd Respondent as Member of Parliament representing UPDF was null and void having arisen from a process that was unconstitutional.

(f) A permanent injunction restraining the Electoral Commission and government from holding a by-election/filling of the purported vacant seat of Hon. Sejusa until the proper procedure is followed.

(g) A permanent injunction restraining parliament from carrying out further probing and/or inquiries into the Hon. Kipoi’s purported absence from parliament with a view of unconstitutionally declaring his seat vacant as in Hon. Sejusa’s case.

(h) A permanent injunction restraining the 3rd respondent from being sworn in as Member of Parliament as his election was tainted with unconstitutionalities and illegalities.

(i) Costs of the Petition.

21. This petition is accompanied by the affidavit of Bukenya Church Ambrose sworn in support of the petition and filed herewith.

22. The Petitioner’s address of service is Uganda Catholic Lawyers’ Society Secretariat at 1st Floor, Suite No. 14, Pope Paul (VI) Memorial Hotel Complex, Plot 7867, Nabunya Road – Rubaga. P.O. Box 14326, Mengo – Kampala, Uganda

DATED at KAMPALA this…20…day of………January……2014

____________
ADVOCATE
(COUNSEL FOR THE PETITIONER)

Drawn& Filed Jointly by;

Uganda Catholic Lawyers’ Society Secretariat,
1st Floor, Pope Paul (VI) Memorial Hotel Complex,
Plot 7867, Nabunya Road – Rubaga.
P.O. Box 14326, Mengo – Kampala,
Uganda

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