The four Legislators who were expelled from the ruling National Resistance Movement party have said Friday’s ruling by the Constitutional Court has exposed the partiality of the Judiciary.
Four of the five judges of the Constitutional Court on Friday ruled that the four MPs be temporarily stopped from accessing Parliament or participating in the business of the House until the main petition filed by their party is determined.
Justices Steven Kavuma, Richard Buteera, Augustine Nshimye and Faith Mwondha ruled that since the NRM party that sent the MPs to Parliament had expelled them, it was not right for them to remain in the House. Justice Remmy Kasule, on the other hand, said the action was not proper since the embattled legislators represent the people, not the party.
The ruling means that MPs Theodore Ssekikubo, Muhammed Nsereko, Bernabas Tinkasiimire and Wilfred Niwagaba will stay out of Parliament until the Constitutional Court makes a final ruling regarding their fate.
But the MPs said they were delighted that all Ugandans can now confirm that some of the judges on the bench are promoters and members of the NRM who never denounced their party membership. They questioned the judgement delivered by the four judges led by acting Deputy Chief Justice Steven Kavuma saying he did not give any basis for ruling that the MPs vacate their seats.
The MPs also say the judges failed to deliver a judgement on the initial petition and only delivered a ruling on the interim order to kick them out of Parliament because it was President Yoweri Museveni’s plan from the beginning.
Ndorwa East MP Wilfred Niwagaba said the judges just executed President Museveni’s wish of automatically kicking them out of Parliament to organise a by-election.
The MPs described the Constitutional Court as the NRM disciplinary committee saying that it was NRM delivering its own judgment. They further lamented that all hope is lost because even the Judiciary which is the final arbiter has been tampered with.
Kampala Central MP Mohammed Nsereko said the ghost that has been hovering above Uganda’s democracy has entered the Judiciary adding that it is unfortunate the arbiter of all conflicts has been politicized.
The MPs said they will not be deterred by what they called cadre-Judges, but will continue to fight for constitutionalism and the rule of law and added that they represent people not President Museveni.
The court in its ruling also directed Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Kadaga to temporarily restrain the MPs from entering Parliament until the main petition is pronounced.
The MPs were dragged to court by the NRM party arguing that their expulsion from the party should automatically lead to their eviction from the house.