Eight months since FDC Women's League boss Ingrid Turinawe sued the state after she was groped by a police officer, the attorney general has failed to file a response.
Turinawe was allegedly assaulted as she headed to a political rally in Nansana on April 20, 2012. In her plaint, Turinawe says the cruel action by police humiliated her before many people in Nansana, her five children and husband who watched her being harassed on television stations and internet, among others.
The respondents in the suit are Kampala Metropolitan police Commander Andrew Felix Kaweesi and AG Peter Nyombi. Turinawe wants over Shs 560m in costs for the violation of her rights and vandalising of her car. The case was filed in February 2013 and Nyombi was given 15 days to reply but according to court records, he has failed to do so.
Following Nyombi's failure to defend the police action, Turinawe, through Rwakafuuzi and Company Advocates on Friday, asked the High court to allow the case to be resolved without the respondents (ex parte action).
"The first respondent [Attorney General] was effectively served with court summons after filing the suit but has never filed a defence or applied to file a defence out of time," reads the application in part.
Turinawe's application is supported by an affidavit sworn by Ali Mugema, a clerk from Rwakafuuzi & Company Advocates, who asserts that he served the Attorney General's office on February 18, 2013 and State Attorney Jane Frances Nanvuma acknowledged the summons. Mugema states that he is aware the respondents have failed to file in their defence.
He added that failing to respond to summons after nine months is contrary to the civil procedure rules, which give the respondent 15 days to file his or her defence from the date of service.
However when contacted, the Director Civil Litigation Cheborion Barishaki, explained that the delay in responding to the lawsuit came after the State Attorney Ellison Karuhanga, who was handling the case, resigned from office.
Barishaki added that their plan to meet Turinawe's lawyers to file the defence ran out of time. But Rwakafuuzi insisted that he would push through with the ex parte application, before Justice Elizabeth Musoke.