Muhamad Kibedi Nsegumire is said to have presented results that were contrary to what had been officially declared.
KAMPALA - A former contestant in the Kampala Central Division mayoral race tried to doctor election results in an attempt to win the race, court heard Tuesday.
Robert Bautu, who is representing Charles Serunjogi, said Muhamad Kibedi Nsegumire presented results that were contrary to what had been officially declared by the Electoral Commission.
Bautu cited several polling stations where then-candidate Nsegumire presented contrary results that were contested by the EC.
Bautu and Francis Ninye opposed the appeal on grounds that Nsegumire relied on 11 forged declaration forms to claim victory.
“The appellant (Nsegumire) presented a declaration of results form showing that he obtained 411 votes at Old Catholic Church(M-NAK) Kamwokya. The returning officer disputed this and presented his tally sheet which shows he obtained 121 whilst the respondent obtained 153 votes,” Bautu said.
While appearing before a panel of three justices: Remmy Kasule, Richard Buteera and Hellen Obura of Court of Appeal, Bautu said there was an attempt to change the results by committing various forgeries.
Nsegumire denied the claims.
He submitted that the moment fraud and forgery in respect of 11 declaration forms were detected, the judge was right to reject Nsegumire’s claims that he won the election.
Bautu and Ninye asked court to dismiss the appeal with cost and uphold the finding of the High Court which declared that Serunjogi was duly elected as the Chairman of Kampala Central Division .
“In the light of the explanation by the returning officer and his emphasis that the anomalies are minor and did not affect what each individual candidate obtained, the learned trial judge cannot be faulted for rejecting any allegations of minor mistakes in tallying,” Bautu said.
Justice Albert Rugadya Atwooki of the High Court in August dismissed a petition filed by Nsegumire, saying Serunjogi was validly elected as Kampala Central division mayor.
Nsegumire had alleged that the election had been marred by electoral malpractice but the court rejected his claims.
On the issue of defamation, Bautu submitted that Nsegumire failed to adduce evidence that he was defamed and as a result of the defamation, voters were swayed from voting for him.
“The allegation of defamation falls flat on the face because there was no independent evidence to support the defamation and that the third respondent (Serunjogi) disparaged him by calling him a thief,” Bautu said.
Nsegumire claims that Serunjogi at different rallies during the campaign referred to him as a thief who should not be voted for. He noted that the judge should have considered the issue of defamation.
Through his lawyer, Hassan Kamba, Nsegumire wants the election annulled on grounds that it was not conducted in a free and transparent manner.
Kamba said Justice Rugadya made mistakes when he found that falsifying of results in at least three polling stations did not affect the outcome of the results.
Kamba faulted the judge for holding that there was no chaos at the tally centre and Nsegumire was not chased from the tallying centre as he claims.
The lead judge Kasule said the ruling of the court will be on notice.