Court

Human Rights Lawyer Petitions Court Seeking Reopening of Voters’ Register Updating Exercise

Nagami Gloria, a lawyer working with the Network of Public Interest Lawyers (NETPIL) has petitioned High Court seeking orders to have the Electoral Commission (EC) reopen the updating of voters Registers exercise so as to enable all Ugandans who have turned 18 in 2020 to participate in the 2021 general elections.

In her application, Nagami says that since the exercise was closed on December 23, 2019, it denies many Ugandans a chance especially those making 18 this year to be recognized as eligible voters in the forth coming elections.

On November 23, 2019, the Electoral Commission commenced with the exercise of updating voter’s registers which had been postponed twice due to the overwhelming number of applicants at the centers as well as the bad weather.

Nagami noted that after the expiry of the period stated, the Commission said that there would be no extension of the same, which has affected many Ugandans.

“That I know the respondents actions have disenfranchised 972,400 (nine hundred seventy two thousand four hundred) Ugandans’ rights who have turned 18 years in 2020,” Nagami asserts in her petition.

Therefore she has asked court to declare that the conduct of the Commission of depriving Ugandans of 18 years a right to vote is an infringement on their fundamental rights and a violation of articles 1, 59, and 21 of the constitution.

“An order to ensure that the respondent takes all the necessary steps to ensure that all citizens who are affected by this process register and exercise their right to vote in the forth coming elections,” the petition further demands.

She also asked court to issue a permanent injunction restraining the Electoral Commission from holding any elections or referendum without this group of Ugandans.

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The counsel for the applicant is expected to apply for a Certificate of Urgency in order to have their matter fixed in the shortest time possible due to its nature.

 

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