ULS president Francis Gimara
Uganda Law Society (ULS) has expressed interest in joining the constitutional petition to challenge Justice Steven Kavuma’s ruling.
The Deputy Chief Justice, Kavuma, issued a court order stopping Parliament from debating the sh6b oil cash bonanza to selected government officials.
The order was served to Parliament and the Attorney General.
As result Speaker, Rebecca Kadaga, on Tuesday suspended the House indefinitely and ordered the Attorney General to vacate what she termed as a ‘stupid’ order.
Francis Gimara, the president ULS said that Kavuma's directive stopping Parliament from debating the sh6b oil cash bonus closes down the institution's mandate to debate issues of public importance.
"ULS takes strong exception to this order because we believe it in effect closes down parliament as an arena to debate issues of public importance and those related to how public affairs are managed. The order sets a dangerous precedent with serious negative effects on the functioning of the legislative organ of the state," he said.
Gimara said that the principle of separation of power forbids the judiciary from intervening in the deliberative process of parliament and that its mandate is limited to determining the validity of the outcomes from the legislative process.
"ULS has decided to apply to be joined as an interested party to constitutional petition NO. 07 of 2017 from which the impugned order arises. ULS will move to challenge the interim order and the petition," he said in a press statement released Wednesday.
Both the petition and the application for the interim order were filed by a city lawyer Eric Sabiti. Sabiti is among the lawyers who represented the Electoral Commission during the presidential poll petition in the Supreme Court last year.
Gimara also warned the judiciary against making orders that fuel impunity and fetter oversight mandates and also warned lawyers against using the courts to abuse rights derived from the constitution and to undermine mechanisms that every democratic society cherishes.
"We urge parliament and all decision makers to strengthen the vetting process for the appointment of judicial officers. It should be recalled that the Judicial Service Commission had reservations about the appointment of the Deputy Chief Justice and parliament appointment committee glossed about it," he pointed out.