High court at Masindi presided over by justice Elizabeth Nahamya has thrown out a petition that was filed by the former independent parliamentary candidate for Kibanda County North constituency challenging the election of NRM’s Taban Iddi Amin as the area member of parliament.
After February 18th parliamentary elections, Taban Iddi Amin, the grand son of former Uganda’s president dictator Iddi Amin was declared by the Electoral Commission was the MP for Kibanda north county.
However; Otada petitioned high court alleging that, Electoral Commission nominated Taban illegally because in the voter’s register for Byeyale trading center I-K, Taban Iddi Amin is not a registered voter but instead Iddi Amin Taban Tampo is the registered voter and that, the two are different people altogether.
Through his lawyer Asuman Nyonyintono, Otada told court that Iddi Amin Taban Tampo who is a registered voter does not have qualification for senior six, a prerequisite for one to stand as a member of parliament and there electoral commission nominated him irregularly.
Several witnesses also swore affidavits pinning Taban of voter bribery because he gave out money at different campaign rallies and threw coins in his way to campaign rallies bought food, water and sodas to electorates, campaigning at night and intimidating voters by putting on military attires yet he is not a soldier.
Through his lawyer, Caleb Alaka of Alaka and company advocates, Taban denied most of the claims raised by Otada. He said that, he never bribed or authorized any one to bribe voters on his behalf.
Taban consented for being called “Jegege” meaning pauper because he moves on throwing coins to residents but not with intention of bribing them. He also told court that, changing his name to Iddi Amin Taban Tampo was not meant to hoodwink voters to elect him because everyone knows by the same names.
In her ruling, Justice Nahamya dismissed Otada’s petition and held that, here was no substantial noncompliance evidence with electoral laws leading to illegal nomination and election of the first respondent as Member of Parliament for Kibanda North County.
“I also hold that, he (taban) was qualifying to stand as a member of parliament. There has been insufficient evidence to prove that, the respondent committed illegal acts and electoral offences personally or through his agents with his knowledge and consent”, she stated.
Nahamya added that: “Consequently, in pursuant to Section 63(6) (b) of parliamentary elections Act, I hold that, the first respondent was duly elected and elections shall be and remain as valid as if no petition has been presented against the first respondent”.
She also ruled that, costs shall be awarded to first respondent and declined to make an order to costs related to electoral commission.
Commenting on the ruling after court session, Otada rejected the ruling saying Nahamya completely failed to deliver justice and he would therefore appeal the judgment. “Our victory has just been delayed but we believe that, the appellant court that has three judges will agree with us”, he added.
Otada congratulated his supporters upon being confident in court while Nahamya delivered her judgment.
On the other hand, Taban described his victory as NRM victory adding that, lies spread quickly but truth comes slowly. He said that, whatever allegations that were raised by Otada were mere lies and that court had proved it beyond reasonable doubt.