The high court in Masindi has thrown out Bunyoro affairs minister, Ernest Kiiza following a election petition that was filed by his close rival in 18th February 2016 elections for Masindi municipality, Kabakumba Labwooni Matsiko.
Kiiza was thrown out of parliament by following a judgment that was made by Justice Elizabeth Nahamya, a resident presiding judge handling election petitions from Bunyoro region that were filed at Masindi high court.
The ruling was made on Wednesday evening and was read by Alex Ajij Makay, deputy regidtrar civil division of Uganda high court at Kampala during a fully parked court session that was attended by Kabakumba Matsiko, the petitioner; Ernest Kiiza, the first respondent while EC commission was represented by Kasande Meran Asiimwe, the assistant returning officer for Masindi district.
Nahamya nullified Kiiza’s elections due to construction of wells, donation of money to football, jerseys, and the ball itself. “I hold that the petitioner managed to prove to the satisfaction of court that the first respondent directly or indirectly through his agents and his consent and approval committed electoral offences”, Nahamya stated.
She added that: “The first petitioner proved to the satisfaction of this court that there were acts of bribery by the first respondent that were suffice to set aside the election. The petitioner approved more than one act of bribery committed on various occasions by the first respondent. The acts of bribery were wide spread and calculated. These were intended to tilt the balance of results of the election against the petitioner”.
Nahamya cited the issue of wells where the first respondent inscribed his names (Ernest Kiiza Apuuli) on the wells constructed, the actions in sums amounted to illegal practices particularly the bribery of members of community.
In view of the above, Nahamya said that: “It is now that we are putting the elections aside pursuant to section 511c of parliamentary elections act and accordingly set aside the election of Member of Parliament for Masindi Municipality, Ernest Kiiza.
After 18th February elections, Ibrahim Kizindo Salim, the returning officer in Masindi decalared Ernest Kiiza as the MP for Masindi municipality with 14,181 votes who was NRM flag bearer followed by Kabakumba Labwoni Matsiko with 9,076 votes that stood as an independent. Other people in the race were Tugume KB Moses with an FDC flag, Rogers Kanti a Go Forward candidate and pastor Lenox Mugume who was an independent candidate.
Nahamya awarded costs to the petitioner Kabaukumba and ordered Electoral Commission to hold fresh elections.