Supreme Court Judge Esther Kitimbo Kisaakye has petitioned the Constitutional Court challenging what she termed as witch-hunt by the judiciary.
In her petition, Justice Kisaakye says following the catastrophe during the 2021 presidential election petition by National Unity Platform’s (NUP) Robert Kyagulanyi challenging President Yoweri Museveni’s election, a number of unconstitutional acts have been committed by the five respondents including the Chief Justice Alphonse Owiny Dollo, Permanent Secretary Pius Bigirimana, the commissioner human resources in judiciary Apophia Tumwine and the Chief Registrar of the Judiciary, Sarah Langa.
According to her, the act by the Chief Justice stopping her from delivering her consent ruling in the case, closure of Supreme Court premises to deny her entrance and issuance of the resultant press statement were unlawful .
“The petitioner contends that the acts of the first respondent(Dollo) and the officials of the judiciary issuing a deceitful and defamatory press release about the petitioner and about the events that took place on March, 18, 2021 at the Supreme Court are inconsistent with and in contravention of the constitution,” court documents say.
The Supreme Court judge says she was also denied funds for medical treatment by the Chief Justice and the Judiciary Permanent Secretary, but also failed to recognize and follow seniority at the highest court in the land, all actions she says were illegal.
“Unknown to the petitioner, on March, 20,2021 in the absence of a complaint from anyone, the Judicial Service Commission commenced investigations against her disguised as a general inquiry into the events of 18th and 19th March 2021 at the Supreme Court without observing any due process and the set procedures under the Constitution of Uganda.”
She says that during the process of the “secretive inquiry” against her, the Judicial Service Commission solicited a complaint from the Chief Justice all of which were illegal.
The Supreme Court judge says she has also been denied leave, as well as leave allowances for her driver and bodyguard by the judiciary.
“Since the petitioner returned from leave on June, 27, 2022, she has since been omitted from Supreme Court duty rosters and cause-lists despite informing the Chief Justice, the administrative judge of the Supreme Court and the registrar that she is available for work.”
“The respondents have been acting as an organized syndicate that strikes in separate but coordinated manner with the apparent objective of punishing the petitioner for exercising her right and duty to read her reasoned rulings in the presidential election petition.”
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