Kibalama: Bobi Wine misled, sidelined me

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By New Vision

Moses Kibalama , the former president of National Unity Reconciliation and Development Party (NURP) which was later renamed National Unity Platform (NUP) has told court that he and his team were sidelined from leadership positions of the party.

“I brought new people in the party and we thought we would be assigned leadership positions but unfortunately we were sidelined,” he revealed.

“People who should be in the rightful positions were thrown out of the party,” Kibalama said, prompting him to file new evidence in court regarding the matter.

Victoria University

Kibalama, 59, made the statements before Justice Musa Ssekaana, Friday (September 25, 2020) as he was being cross-examined by the Electoral Commission lawyer Eric Sabitti in a case in which two people petitioned court, seeking deregistration of NUP party.

Kibalama, said he signed the first affidavit in support of the matter without reading its content and consulting his lawyer.

“When I was travelling to Kayunga, NUP members in the company of lawyer, Anthony Wameli, invited me, saying it was urgent. I then rushed to the headquarters and signed an affidavit in support of the case without reading it,” he said.

Kibalama said following consultations, he hired the services of another lawyer from Barungi, Baingana and Company Advocates and made a second statement.

Court heard that Kibalama was once a senior police officer, who served in Idi Amin and Milton Obote’s regime.

Kibalama also admitted to falsifying minutes of the alleged extra ordinary delegates’ conference held at Kakiri on July 14, 2020, in which Kyadondo East MP, Robert Kyagulanyi alias Bobi Wine and others were purportedly elected as new office bearers.

“The meeting did not take place. We had been given timelines of changing the party name by the Electoral Commission that is why we falsified returns and handed it over to the public body,” he states.

Kibalama explained that party records have to be submitted not less than six months after the party has held a delegate’s conference.

Court heard that this is the third time Kibalama has attempted to change the party name.

“Did you know that giving false information is an offense because you are a retired senior police officer,” Sabitti asked but Kibalama said he was not aware of it.

This prompted the lawyer to invite the court to make a finding and file to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) for further prosecution of Kibalama for giving false information to a public body.

However, Justice Ssekaana said he will rule on the application while disposing off the main case.

Kibalama also claimed that he was misled by Kyagulanyi’s lawyers on the legality of the actions taken to change the party name.

Sabitti also informed the court that their attempts to mediate over the matter since Kibalama, who has been missing, have resurfaced.

“When the respondents were missing, we and their lawyers have had negotiations to resolve the matter,” he said.

But Kibalama’s lawyer Enock Wandida said they were informed about the matter, Friday morning.

Kibalama also dismissed allegations that he sold the party to Kyagulanyi and his team at $5m.

Lawyer Medard Ssegoona, asked Kibalama to explain why he signed the first statement at 8:00pm and the second at 4:00pm, Kibalama said he was not keen on the issue of time.

In his first statement, Kibalama said the party was registered lawfully. However, he later changed his evidence contending that the change of National Unity Reconciliation and Development Party (NURP) name to NUP was done fraudulently.

Kibalama also claimed that he was misled by Kyagulanyi’s lawyers on the legality of the actions taken to change the party name.

He conceded to the grounds of the application, stating that the legal status of NURP as a political party should be preserved.

Kibalama states that nine people sat and decided to rubber stamp Kyagulanyi and other members as new office bearers after which signatures were collected from 41 people.

Secondly, he says many of the names that appear in the attendance list attached to the false minutes of the meeting are new entrants and do not qualify to be delegates to the party delegates conference under the party constitution.

Suit

Last month, two founders of NURP- Difas Basile and Hassan Twala, petitioned the court, seeking deregistration of NUP.

Through Ogwado and Company Advocates, the two contend that it was illegal to change their party name without consulting them.

Kyagulanyi is being sued alongside NUP, Kibalama, David Lewis Rubongoya, Aisha Kabanda, Joel Ssenyonyi, Flavia Kalule Nabagabe, Fred Nyanzi Ssentamu, EC and the Attorney General.
Kyagulanyi is being sued alongside NUP, Kibalama, David Lewis Rubongoya, Aisha Kabanda, Joel Ssenyonyi, Flavia Kalule Nabagabe, Fred Nyanzi Ssentamu, EC and the Attorney General.

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

Background

Court documents indicate that NURP was gazetted as a political party in Uganda on December13, 2004 and issued a certificate of registration on December 28, 2004.

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

The petitioners assert that Kibalama did not pass the requisite resolution to change the party’s name under the NURP party constitution 2004.

Credit: New Vision

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