Monday March 14 2016

Judge disqualifies self from poll petition case


Lira. Lira resident judge Winifred Nabisinde has excused herself from an election petition case in which state minister for Northern Uganda Rebecca Amuge Otengo is challenging the election of Mr Samuel Okwir as Moroto County MP.

Justcie Nabisinde told court last Thursday that she could not continue with the hearing because she had received threatening messages from people masquerading as State House agents. The judge said she had referred the case to the Principle Judge in Kampala for reallocation.
The High Court in Lira on February 25, issued a temporally injunction stopping the EC from conducting vote recount from the Moroto parliamentary election. This was in response to an application filed by Mr Okwir (Independent), who was declared winner of the Moroto parliamentary seat. Mr Okwir applied for the court injunction after Ms Otengo (NRM) secured a court order for a recount of votes from the three sub-counties of Abia, Aloi and Akura.

In her petition, Ms Otengo alleged that she obtained the highest number of votes but her votes were either falsified or invalidated. Ms Otengo further argued that the exercise of counting, tallying and declaration of results was done in contravention of the principles of fairness and transparency. The vote recount was scheduled to take place on February 25.

But Mr Okwir’s legal team applied for another injunction blocking the exercise saying it was illegal and uncalled for. The High Court then issued a court order stopping the vote recount until the application filed by Mr Okwir’s legal team was disposed of According to the results, Mr Okwir polled 15,087 votes against Ms Otengo’s 12,885 votes.