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.
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.
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.