12 April 2018

Uganda: Age Limit Hearing Adjourned to Tuesday

Photo: Michael Kakumirizi/Daily Monitor
Government lawyers led by the deputy Attorney General Mwesigwa Rukutana consult during the age limit petition in Mbale.

Mbale — The Constitutional Court sitting in Mbale District has adjourned the hearing of the consolidated petitions challenging the amendment of Article 102 (b) of the Constitution, to April 17.

Deputy Chief Justice Alfonse Owiny-Dollo, said after the evening session, that court will resume Tuesday next week with the cross examination of among others, the Chief of Defence Forces, Gen David Muhoozi and Secretary to the Treasury Keith Muhakanizi over their testimonies about the age limit petition.

"The hearing has been adjourned to Tuesday and we will start with cross examination of the witness," Justice Owiny - Dollo, said.

The petition is challenging the passing of the law by Parliament which amended the Constitution last year to remove the presidential age limits.

The deputy Attorney General Rukutana Mwesigwa told court, in defence of the age limit law, that the government of Uganda acted legally when it facilitated the process of enacting the said law.

"My Lord, we shall demonstrate that petitions are unfounded, frivolous and devoid of any merit whatsoever. Therefore, we shall be applying that each and every one of them be dismissed with costs," he said.

He prayed to court to dismiss the petitions, saying the amendment of Article 102(b) was constitutional.

"My Lords, Article 1, clause 4, provides that people shall express their will and consent on who shall govern them and how they shall be governed through regular free and fair elections of the representatives," he said.

In his submissions, Rukutana when asked by Justice Kenneth Kakuru whether the government had plans of organising a referendum to harmonise the terms of President, Parliament and local government councils, said there were no such plans.

"That was just speculative," he said sending the court into a bout of laughter, adding however there is a possibility.

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