Uganda: Ssenyonyi's Win As Nakawa West MP Upheld By Court

14 October 2021

By Juliet Kigongo

The election of Joel Ssenyonyi (NUP) as the MP for Nakawa West constituency in Kampala, was Thursday upheld by the High Court.

Mr Ssenyonyi's January 14 victory had been challenged by Mr Shukla Mukesh, one of the candidates in the race.

The presiding judge, Isaac Muwata held that there was no concrete evidence adduced by Mr Mukesh to overturn Mr Ssenyonyi's deserved win before condemning him to costs.

In his petition, Mr Mukesh had accused Mr Ssenyonyi and the Electoral Commission, of not conducting the election in accordance with the electoral laws; that he committed illegal practices of ballot stuffing and allowing persons not being registered voters to vote among others.

However, Mr Mukesh could not recall exactly, which polling stations where the alleged electoral malpractices happened as there were no sworn-in affidavits to back up his claims.

To that effect, the judge ruled that it was not enough for Mr Mukesh to harbour allegations with no proof.

Further in his ruling, the judge observed that the alterations in the declaration forms for eight polling stations that Mukesh highlighted; could not substantially affect the final results even if they had been proved to have had alterations in favour of Mr Ssenyonyi.

The Judge noted that even if the valid votes cast in the eight polling stations were given to Mr Mukesh; still the margin between them would still be big; that is 31,576 against Mukesh's 806.

The January 14 polls saw the EC, return Mr Ssenyonyi who doubles as the spokesperson for NUP, as the winner with 31,576 votes against Mukesh's 806 votes who was returned sixth in the race out of the 12 candidates who had taken part in the race.

Shortly after the ruling, Mr Ssenyonyi said: "We are glad that the victory of the people of Nakawa has been upheld. This man has wasted a lot of my time, of course, resources, but I am now glad that this has come to an end. If he chooses to appeal, we shall meet him there and do to him the same we have done to him at High Court."

Mr Mukesh said he was going to review the decision with his lawyers and see what steps to take next.

"I have congratulated Hon Ssenyonyi because I have nothing bad against him. This is people power and I am also people power," he said.

In a related development, the High Court in Kampala also upheld the victory of Denis Sekabira as MP for Katikamu North constituency in Luwero District.

Mr Sekabira's victory had been challenged by Mr Gaddafi Nassur.

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