Court summons Kibalama over NUP saga

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Moses Kibalama

By New Vision

Court has adjourned a case in which two men petitioned court, seeking to de-register National Unity Platform (NUP), a party headed by Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu popularly known as Bobi Wine.

Justice Musa Ssekaana (Friday) adjourned the case and summoned Moses Nkonge Kibalama and Paul Ssimbwa Kagombe to appear in court on September 25 to be cross-examined on issues related to the party.

The lawyers of Bobi Wine have been allowed to file an affidavit in reply to what the two alleged.

Victoria University

Last month, Difas Basile and Hassan Twala petitioned court, contending that the change of name from National Unity Reconciliation and Development Party (NURP) to NUP is illegal.

The petitioners, therefore, want Electoral Commission (EC) to stop recognising NUP and to degazette it.

NUP has no file. It went to the party’s register and changed the file of NURP to NUP, which is illegal,” lawyer James Byamukama purports. Court documents indicate that NURP was formed in 2004.

Byamukama adds, “The road map is going on and those, who hijacked the party are busy nominating themselves as flagbearers. This needs to stop so that the case is heard and disposed-off so that we know the true owner of the party”.

On Monday, the complainants, who claim to be the founder members of NURP, filed the suit at the Civil Division of the High Court, against Kyagulanyi, NUP, Moses Nkonge Kibalama, David Lewis Rubongoya, Aisha Kabanda, Joel Ssenyonyi, Flavia Kalule Nabagabe, Fred Nyanzi Ssentamu and Paul Ssimbwa Kagombe.

NUP party members were sued alongside EC and the Attorney General (AG), who is the principal legal adviser to the government. 

Declarations

The complainants seek a court declaration that the resolution dated May 12, 2017, nominating Kyagulanyi, as NURP Presidential flag bearer in the 2021 general elections is illegal and in contravention of the party constitution.

They want EC to de-gazette the change of the party name appearing under general notice number 838 of 2019 to de-register the change of name to NUP and re-instate NURP as the legally recognised party name the gazetted NURP party colours and symbols.

The applicants further want a permanent injunction restraining government and EC, their servants or agents from recognising NUP as a registered political party or organization, receiving any returns in the name of and or on behalf of NUP or nominating any candidates for election on the NUP ticket.

Background

Court documents indicate that NURP was gazetted as a political party in Uganda on December 13, 2004, and issued a certificate of registration on December 28, 2004.

The petitioners, however, purport that in 2019 without any colour of right and in breach of the party constitution; Nkonge Kibalama and EC illegally changed its party name to NUP and on July 14, 2020, illegally handed over its political leadership to Kyagulanyi and Ssimbwa Kagombe.

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