The Leader of Opposition in Parliament Mathias Mpuuga has pledged to lead an attack on the Judiciary until its judicial officers stop supporting acts of torture by the state security agents.
The Nyendo-Mukungwe legislator made his pledge while addressing journalists at the headquarters of the National Unity Platform in Kamwokya on Monday where he blamed the Judiciary for joining the small group of people torturing Ugandans yet they are supposed to be pro-people.
“There will be a subject of attack and direct subject. I must inform his Lordship the Chief Justice that he has the duty to call out his team to be pro-people. What kind of judge can entertain a matter where a person before them cannot even sit nor respond to the charges and you say they should be remanded? I want to warn that I’m actually leading an attack on the Judiciary until it stops supporting torture,” Mpuuga said.
He added, “We cannot allow the Judiciary to work and support acts of torture like that a one of Kakwenza where he was brought before the judicial officer, unable to speak nor stand and you entertain that? You have not had that judicial officer under a charge of abuse of their space?”
Mpuuga’s statement follows the court’s reaction towards author Kakwenza Rukirabashaija who was detained and tortured by the state agents however on Monday when he appeared before court to apply to move his case to high court and for his passport to be returned so that he can travel to Kenya for medical treatment, the court rejected both requests, before setting a trial date for March 23.
The court told him that he was health and there was no reason for him to travel.
While reacting to Mpuuga’s claims, Jameson Karemani the Judiciary Spokesperson clarified that the mandate of the Judiciary is to resolve disputes through adjudication that are brought before it.
“The disputes adjudicated are presented before the Judiciary. The Judiciary is not supposed to be seen siding with any side. We receive complaints before us, and that is how we shall make statements through court decisions.”
Karemani also said that the Judiciary is presumed not to know what is happening until the dispute is brought before it. He added that in the courtroom Kakwenza appeared normal and the magistrate could not see his scars.
“Kakwenza appeared to be normal when he appeared in the courtroom. I have seen pictures in the papers. The pictures must be produced in the court, not in the papers,” he said.
The 33-year old Kakwenza was arrested in December after posting comments that deam to be abusive and demeaning on Twitter about President Yoweri Museveni and first son Muhoozi Kainerugaba. He is being charged with ‘offensive communication’.
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