The opposition “People’s Government” is set to challenge Thursday’s Constitutional Court ruling which based its opinion on Dr. Kizza Besigye’s 2016 mock swearing in ceremony as president.
The constitutional court in a majority decision, threw out Besigye’s human rights appeal saying he couldn’t seek redress in the court, having declared the entire government under president Yoweri Museveni as illegitimate.
“Since there is no validly elected Government in power, it would follow that there are no legally constituted courts of law. This court it follows is illegitimate, and as such has no power to adjudicate on any dispute including determination of this petition,” the court ruled.
The Deputy Prime Minister of the “People’s Government” Semujju Ibrahim said on Saturday that the consequences of the ruling are far beyond a political struggle.
“This Constitutional Court ruling has serious consequences. Someone can get to Mulago tomorrow and they refuse to give him or her drugs because they have said the Government is illegitimate,” said Semujju.
“It was bias of the highest order. It sounded like someone giving an academic opinion. Contesting Museveni’s election cannot be a basis for making a judicial opinion,” said Semujju.
Semujju, who is also the Chief Opposition Whip at Parliament (under Museveni’s constituted Government), said the people’s government is heading to Supreme Court based on the implications of the ruling.
“I am still shocked by the ruling. We need to appeal to the Supreme Court to take care of its consequences,” added Semujju.
Besigye went to Constitutional Court to challenge the constitutionality of Sections of the Penal Code Act (PCA) under which the Police clamped down walk-to-work protests, subjected him to detention, and was put on trial.
The bench that also included Justices Geoffrey Kiryabwire, Elizabeth Musoke, Cheborion Barishaki, and Stephen Musota acknowledged that Besigye’s petition raises pertinent matters but his 2016 action (of swearing in) handicaps the process.