Kampala. Lawyer Male Mabirizi has asked the Court of Appeal judges to reinstate the Shs13b claim of costs against Kabaka of Buganda Muwenda Mutebi in a land case.
The Shs13b bill arises from a notice of appeal, which was filed but later withdrawn by Kabaka Mutebi through his lawyers challenging a High Court decision which halted Mabirizi’s application seeking the king to present financial accounts on all land transactions.
While halting the application, the court ordered the Kabaka to pay Mr Mabirizi legal costs of the notice of appeal which the king withdrew.
However, Mr Mabirizi claims that he incurred costs to file the application that sought to throw out Kabaka’s appeal which was withdrawn without his consent.
In November 2017, the court’s Deputy Registrar, Ms Esta Nambayo, dismissed Mr Mabirizi’s bill with costs arguing that it had not been properly filed.
At the hearing before the Court of Appeal judges led by Justice Egonda Ntende, Mr Mabirizi pleaded to court to reinstate his bill and be given an opportunity for a fair hearing. Other judges are Cheborion Barishaki and Percy Tuhaise.
“The learned deputy registrar erred in law and fact when she dismissed the bill of costs yet the respondent (Kabaka) had conceded to payment of costs to the applicant and the only contention was on quantum hence reversing the respondent’s own concession without the respondent’s consent,” said Mr Mabirizi.
However, Kabaka’s lawyer, Mr Christopher Bwanika asked the court to dismiss the bill arguing that it arose from a case that was dismissed by both the High Court and Court of Appeal.
CASE AND PROCEEDINGS
According to Mr Bwanika, no party can derive benefits from an illegal proceeding after the case was declared illegal. Citing court decisions, Mr Bwanika said Mr Mabirizi’s case was declared unsustainable and hence has no locus to make any claim against the Kabaka.