It all began when the trial judge, Justice Henry Peter Adonyo told the appellant that court was ready to grant her bail.
KAMPALA - Jailed former Makerere University research fellow Dr. Stella Nyanzi has rejected court’s guidance to accord her bail.
This was on Thursday as she appeared at the International Crimes Division of the High Court in Kololo to the hearing of her appeal against conviction and sentence over cyber harassment.
It all began when the trial judge, Justice Henry Peter Adonyo, told the appellant that court was ready to grant her bail.
“You have a constitutional right to apply for bail before this court, and it will be accorded to you if you oblige to court’s bail terms,” Adonyo said.
However, Nyanzi, through her lawyer Isaac Ssemakadde objected to the bail, saying she only needed justice.
“My client will and is not interested in applying for bail, but looks forward to receiving justice from this honorable court,” Ssemakadde said.
Nyanzi’s appeal seeks court to quash her conviction and 18 months sentence for cyber harassment by the Buganda Road Grade One Magistrate Gladys Kamasanyu having found her guilty.
Her appeal is based on ten grounds, where she asserts that the lower court erred and entertained the case against her yet it had no jurisdiction.
She further avowed that the trial magistrate failed to properly evaluate the evidence on record and thus arrived at a wrong decision in convicting her.
However, the DPP, through two senior state attorneys, Timothy Amerit and Janat Kitimbo, too appealed from the same court and want Nyanzi to be convicted over offensive communication.
The state entreaty is based on three grounds, accusing the lower court to have failed to properly evaluate the evidence on record thereby arriving at a wrong conclusion by acquitting Nyanzi on offensive communication thus leading to miscarriage of justice.
The trial judge, Adonyo, who also heads the International Crimes Division, deferred the case to January 6, 2020 for hearing to kick off.
On August 2, 2019, the Buganda Road Grade One Magistrate Gladys Kamasanyu sentenced Nyanzi to 18 months in prison after finding her guilty of cyber harassment contrary to sections 24 (1) and 2 (a) of the Computer Misuse Act, 2011, but acquitted of offensive communication.
However, on September 25, Nyanzi blocked Lady Justice Flavia Anglin Senoga from hearing her appeal.
This was after the trial judge barred journalists and the public from attending court during the hearing of her appeal for she preferred handling the case in secret chambers yet the appellant opted for open court.
Senoga had preferred hearing the appeals from her chambers on grounds that there was no law barring her from hearing the latter from her private chambers.
This prompted Nyanzi and her lawyer to protest against the move and petitioned the Principal Judge, Hon. Justice Yorokamu Bamwine to allocate their appeal to another judge, which he did.
Bamwine is the head of all judges of the High Court in Uganda.