July 23, 2013

MPs Go To Court Over Odoki Reappointment

Three Members of Parliament (MPs) have petitioned court contesting the re-appointment of Benjamin Odoki as Chief Justice for the next two years.

Led by Gerald Karuhanga, the Western Region Youth MP, the legislators are suing government of abrogating the constitution and appointing a retired Judge to be Chief Justice.

The constitution requires the Chief Justice and his deputy to retire at 70-years of age.

 Retired Justice Benjamin Odoki has been reappointed Chief Justice
Retired Chief Justice Benjamin Odoki has been reappointed

The MPs have contracted another retired Supreme Court Judge George Kanyeihamba to represent them as they challenge the government saying that it’s their duty to protect the constitution.

The MPs wondered why Odoki who led the constitutional commission that gave birth to the 1995 constitution is the one disregarding it.

Karuhanga advises President Yoweri Museveni not to be confused and misled by article 142 of the constitution, which specifies that the appointing authority can appoint a retired judge in acting capacity saying the article doesn’t apply to the Chief Justice.

Paul Mwiru, the Jinja Municipality East MP another petitioner reiterated that the circumstances under which other retired judges can be reappointed from retirement does not extend to the Chief Justice.

He warned that if courts of law do not resolve the matter they will resort to other means to stop Museveni from continually disregarding the constitution because he knows that even courts cannot stop him.

Western Youth MP Gerald Karuhanga
The petitioners are led by Western Youth MP Gerald Karuhanga

Sam Otada, the Kibanda MP says Museveni has a new found quest of abrogating the constitution saying that he has succeeded with parliament and has now taken his quest to the Judiciary. He added that going to court is just a courtesy saying that no Ugandan will still have confidence in an arm of government led by a person who doesn’t respect institutions and the constitution he played a big part in creating.

The legislators told Journalists that they will log their complaint before the end of tomorrow. In his 9th July letter to Justice James Ogoola, the Chairman of the judicial service commission, President Museveni communicated his decision to re-appoint retired Chief Justice Benjamin Odoki as Chief Justice for the next two years.

Odoki retired in June after turning 70 years in March this year.

3 thoughts on “MPs Go To Court Over Odoki Reappointment

  1. Waste of time, 9th parliament is in total comedy, they gave way for the president to bend the constitution by allowing the appointment of Aronda to a ministerial post without resigning from the army but now claim they are going to court over odoki-give us a break a a break

  2. Article
    142 (2) of the Constitution
    The President may, acting on the advice of the Judicial Service Commission,appoint
    a person qualified for appointment as a justice of the Supreme Court or a
    Justice of Appeal or a judge of the High Court to act as such a justice or judge
    even though that person has attained the age prescribed for retirement in respect of that office. Knowing that a person is first of a justices of the supreme Court before being made a Chief Justice, then it suffices to say that this provision includes the position of a Chief. Those running to Court are waiting time and money. Kanyeihamba should be kind enough to advise his Clients

  3. Why is it that Karuhanga is raising an eye brow with Odoki re-appointment as chief justice and yet he was very quiet when Aronda and Tumwesigye were being approved for ministerial appointments. These are double standards. The president has acted when the confines of the Constitution and we really support that idea. Am Confident those going to the constitutional court have no ground .

Comments are closed.

Enable Notifications    Ok No thanks