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Court allows Kabaka's land bid appeal

By Farooq Kasule

Added 21st June 2017 06:26 PM

High Court Judge Patricia Basaza Wasswa stated that Kabaka’s intended grounds of appeal raises points of law that arises from questions of a relevant specificity of great value on documents sought in the main case.

Court allows Kabaka's land bid appeal

Kabaka of Buganda, Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II

High Court Judge Patricia Basaza Wasswa stated that Kabaka’s intended grounds of appeal raises points of law that arises from questions of a relevant specificity of great value on documents sought in the main case.

The High Court has allowed the Kabaka of Buganda Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II to appeal against a court decision directing him to disclose bank statements detailing the money collected from people living on his land.

In her brief ruling Wednesday , High Court Judge Patricia Basaza Wasswa stated that Kabaka's intended grounds of appeal raises points of law that arises from questions of a relevant specificity of great value on documents sought in the main case.

"Having carefully read and considered submissions from both the applicant and the respondent, I accordingly grant the applicant (Kabaka) leave to appeal against the said decision," she ruled.

Basaza noted that lawyer Male Kiwanuka Mabirizi's objection against the Kabaka's application for leave had no merit.  Mabirizi, a subject of the Kabaka sued the monarch over the land registration rationale.

Basaza also set June, 28, 2017 as the date Kabaka's application to stay the proceedings, pending the final disposal of his appeal will be heard. On the same day, the Judge will also give the detailed ruling.

Recently, Basaza directed that Kabaka discloses bank statements detailing the money collected from people living on the kingdom land to Mabirizi by June 30 to enable him prepare for his case.

Earlier, Mabirizi submitted that Kabaka's application amounted to an abuse of the court process and asked court to dismiss it.

Mabirizi also submitted that the lawyers from Kalenge, Bwanika, Ssawa & Company Advocates that purports to be representing the Kabaka are masqueraders because they have no valid instructions from the Kabaka.

"An agent cannot delegate powers of attorney. David Mpanga and Charles peter Mayiga cannot give a third party powers of attorney on behalf of the Kabaka under the law. An illegality before court overrides all other issues and I call court to dismiss this application," he submitted.

But Kabaka's lawyers led by Charles Bwanika said the order to reveal details of people who have registered on the Kabaka's land violates privacy rule.

Shortly after the ruling, Buganda's Attorney General David Mpanga who was among the team which represented the Kabaka in court said, "We are pleased that leave has been granted to us because our appeal raises serious grounds," he said.

Also Mabirizi clad in a black suit told the judge that he was not satisfied with her ruling.

Mabirizi said that he still wants the documents from the Kabaka because the proceedings have not been stayed.

 "I want the documents. I do not know why the Kabaka who is a trustee does not want to reveal the documents yet he is even supposed to do this annually," he said.

The case

The case arose on last year August 8, with Mabirizi seeking a pronouncement that compulsory registration of people living on land registered in the Kabaka's name at a sh600, 000 fee, is illegal.

Mabirizi contends that Kabaka is only a trustee of the official mailo land. He wants court to denounce the 10% charge levied by BLB on the sale value of land.

But Kabaka has rubbished Mabirizi's claims, stating that registration is voluntary. The defence is contained in the affidavit of Kizito.

Kizito contends that Kabaka has never deprived any person right to own property, and does not intend to do so.

He explains the 10% charge, saying it is consented to as transfer fee under Section 34 of Uganda's Land Act.

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