Clerk to Uganda’s parliament through Mr. Waiswa Henry Yoweri, on August 5, 2021, replied to lawyer Hassan Male Mabirizi’s request to avail him with academic qualifications submitted by the Prime Minister and 15 other members of Parliament and cabinet ministers.
Mabirizi contends that Nabbanja and 15 other members of parliament and cabinet ministers who include the first lady also holding the portfolio of minister of Education and Sports, lack requisite academic requirements for them to take up the civil service positions they are holding. In a letter Uganda Today news website is privileged to reproduce here below, the cleark to parliament advises Mabirizi to appeal to the Speaker of parliament in case he feels dissatisfied by his office’s verdict. (read letter for technicalities mentioned)
Male Mabirizi is a Ugandan independent lawyer who has etched his name in the country’s annals of history by severally petitioning court to arbitrate in several controversial cases whose respondents include but not limited to the country’s president Yoweri Tibuhaburwa.
Prominent among these various court cases is one where Mabirizi challenged Uganda’s supreme court that had ruled that the country’s parliament acted lawfully to amend article 102B of the constitution to remove the age limit that enabled president Tibuhaburwa to run for president early 2021. The country’s constitution that was promulgated in 1995, had clauses barring any Ugandan to run for the office of the president after serving two terms of 5 years each. The framers of the constitution had deemed it necessary to bar any Ugandan clocking 75 years to run for presidency.
The constitution was amended barely after 10 years in 2005 to remove term limits that enabled president Tibuhaburwa to run for presidency in 2006. Come 2017, the constitution was amended again to pave way for Tibuhaburwa who would have clocked 75 years to run for presidency in 2021 presidential general elections. Parliament amended the constitution. This raised a lot of disenchantment that led to Mabirizi and others to petition the country’s supreme court to reverse the situation. However, supreme court ruled that the constitution was validly amended. This prompted Mabirizi to petition the East African Court to quash Uganda’s supreme court’s verdict. East African court also ruled that Mabirizi’s case was over taken by events. Part of the court’s verdict is reproduced below.
“Therefore, the Constitutional Amendment Bill No. 2 of 2017 stood duly enacted into the Constitutional (Amendment) Act of 2018 upon securing presidential assent. The process leading to the enactment of that law, as well as the Constitutional Court’s judgment in respect thereof are adjudged to have been time-barred, having fallen prey to the two-month time limit prescribed in Article 30(2) of the Treaty. However, the Supreme Court’s judgment was properly placed before the Court, the Reference having been lodged well within that time frame. In so far as this Court is clothed with exclusive jurisdiction over the interpretation of the Treaty, the notion that the Applicant could have (but did not) raise the matters in contention in the Reference before the domestic courts in Uganda is untenable. Given that the said issues had never been conclusively adjudicated by the Court, the defence of res judicata is unsustainable and the challenge to the Supreme Court’s decision was adjudged to represent a live dispute. Thus, it being trite law that nation states can be held internationally responsible for the wrongful actions of their judicial organs, the interrogation of the impugned Supreme Court decision to determine its consistency with the Treaty is well within this Court’s jurisdiction”.
Mabirizi who can arguably be described as a serial litigant, is not yet done as he has already embarked on yet another process of preparations to file a suit against the first lady, the prime minister and 14 other cabinet and members of parliament whom he accuses of not having required papers.