By ANTHONY WESAKA(The Daily Monitor)
A lawyer representing one of the parties in the presidential age limit petition has written to the Deputy Chief Justice Alfonse Owiny-Dollo seeking to know why the Constitutional Court has not delivered its judgment on the case, two months after the hearing closed.
Counsel James Byamukama on June 20 wrote to the Deputy Chief Justice lamenting that at the conclusion of the hearing on April 19, the justices of the court promised to deliver their decision expeditiously, but they have not.
“It is over two months since the hearing of the matter in Mbale but court is silent to when it will deliver its judgment. This has created concern among the petitioners and Ugandans who have an interest in and have been following the matter,” reads Byamukama’s letter in part.
Mr Byamukama is representing one out of the five petitioners, Mr Prosper Businge.
He adds that his client is mindful of the heavy schedule of the Constitutional Court, but Article 137 of the constitution empowers the court to suspend any other business, sit on weekends and public holidays to ensure expeditious disposal of constitutional matters such as the age limit petition.
On Wednesday last week, this newspaper ran a story of how the Constitutional Court had not fulfilled the two-month deadline required to deliver the judgment.
The court should have delivered its verdict latest June 19.
The Uganda Code of Judicial Conduct, gives court a two-month period to deliver a judgment that has been put on notice from the date of concluding the hearing.
“A judicial officer shall promptly dispose of the business of the court, but in so doing must ensure that justice prevails. Protracted trial of a case must be avoided wherever possible. Where a judgment is reserved, it should be delivered within 60 days unless for good reason it is not possible to do so,” section 6.2 of the Uganda Code of Judicial Conduct reads in part.
The Public Relations Officer of the Judiciary, Mr Emmy Vincent Mugabo last week insisted the court had not failed to deliver the judgment within the allowable deadline.
Mr Mugabo explained that a sensitive constitutional matter like this requires much more time to be determined but added that the justices were in the final stages of delivering the judgement.
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