EAC Court of Justice Dismisses Age Limit Petition

The East African Court of Justice has dismissed with costs the consolidated cases filed by seven opposition politicians challenging the removal of the age limit law from the Ugandan constitution.
The petitioners are MPs Winfred Kiiza the (Kasese Woman), John Baptist Nambeshe (Manjiya), Gerald Karuhanga (Ntungamo Municipality), Ibrahim Ssemujju Nganda (Kira Municipality), Betty Nambooze (Mukono Municipality) and former Serere Woman MP, Alice Asianut Alaso plus women rights activist Irene Ovonji Odida.
The panel of three Judges of the East African Court of Justice led by the Principal Judge Monica Mugenyi dismissed the matter on Tuesday after two lawyers Nelson Ndeki and Don Deya representing the seven told the court that they were not willing to proceed with the case.  Other Judges on the panel are; Justice Dr Peter Nyawello and Charles Nyachae.
Deya told the court that they were withdrawing from the case because their clients did not give them further instructions to proceed with the case and neither have they filed any evidence to the court.
As a result, the Attorney General of Uganda, William Byaruhanga and another petitioner Male Mabirizi asked the Judges to dismiss the case on grounds that the other petitioners had still failed to meet the February 2020 deadline that was given to them to file submissions.
They added that despite the failure to meet the deadline, there is nothing that was ever filed since then to show that the politicians are still interested in the matter.
However, Mabirizi disagreed with the Attorney General on dismissing the cases with costs arguing that it was a matter of public interest. 
But the Justices dismissed the case with costs citing that the people should not be using courts to pile up cases they will not handle up to the end while using public interest as an excuse.   
The petitioners had run to the East African Court of Justice after the Supreme Court of Uganda upheld the decision of the Constitutional Court against their petition that had sought to annul the 2017 amendment of the Constitution to remove presidential age limits.


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