National Unity Platform president, Ugandan Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu alias Bobi Wine said on Monday he was withdrawing a court case challenging presidential election results that handed victory to incumbent President Yoweri Museveni, alleging bias by Supreme Court justices hearing the case.
Bobi Wine rejected the results of the January 14 election and said he believed victory was stolen from him. He filed to the Supreme Court asking it to overturn the results on several grounds including widespread use of violence.
“The courts are not independent, it is clear these people (judges) are working for Museveni,” Bobi Wine said.
Bobi said the people of Uganda will have the final say. Earlier, Kyagulanyi complained about three justices on the panel of nine that was set up to determine his petition.
He had particularly asked chief justice Alfonse Owiny-Dollo, whom he accused of having worked as Museveni’s defense lawyer in 2006 when he was similarly sued for another disputed election, Mike Chibita, who, he accused of working as Museveni’s private legal secretary for 7 years and Ezekiel Muhanguzi, who he said is a close relative of Security minister Gen Elly Tumwine a self- confessed “regime sycophant”.
He had asked the three judges to recuse themselves from the case but fell short of formally writing to the court over the same matter.
Solomon Muyita, the judiciary Communications officer said court will only respond to Wine’s accusations and decision to withdraw the case when he has formally quit the case through his lawyers.
“Right now what he has done is, he has only made a political statement, as far as the records of the Supreme Court are (concerned) the case is still there,” he told Reuters.
While speaking to the media over the weekend at the NRM Secretariat in Kampala, The head of the NRM legal team Oscar Kihika, warned Kyagulanyi, saying he can only withdraw the petition with the permission of the court but should be ready for the resultant costs.
He said that it won’t be easy to withdraw election petition of such magnitude.
“You need the permission of the court to withdraw your petition in order to do so you have to file an application which is supposed to be supported by an affidavit and this application has got to be served to lawyers of the respondent, You need to convince court with good reasons why you are withdrawing the petition because it can refuse to give this permission.
He added “Once the court has given him permission, the law is very clear that the court shall charge the party for withdrawing the petition with costs.”