By Ali Mambule
THE High Court in Masaka has ordered the district Muslim council offices, which have been under Police guard, to be reopened.
The newly-elected district Kadhi, Sheikh Ndugga, was, however, blocked from assuming office until a petition against him is heard.
The ousted district Kadhi, Sheikh Huzairu Kiruuta, had asked the court to have him reinstated. Kiruuta is a supporter of the Mufti, Sheikh Shaban Mubajje.
â€œNdugga should stop calling himself district Kadhi and should not access any of the Muslim council property,â€ the petition read.
The court, however, allowed Ndugga to enter the mosque.
â€œThe district Muslim council chairman, Sheikh Ismail Musisi, the council secretary, Sheikh Ahmed Kayemba and other officials should be allowed to access their offices and carry on with their duties,â€ the registrar, J.B Segirinnya, said in a ruling on Friday.
The interim order, he said, would be valid untill July 9, when the next hearing is due.
â€œIt would be upon the judge to either extend this ruling or cancel it,â€ Segirinnya said.
He noted that the row had affected development programmes among Muslims.
â€œThe Constitution provides that the Muslim faith carries out charitable services like health and education to the community. These have been at a standstill since the district Muslim council ousted the Kadhi.â€
Segirinnya wondered why the Muslim council had sacked Kiruuta, who has served for over 30 years, without a honourable and dignified exit.
But the district Police commander, Haruna Isabirye, said the offices at the mosque would remain closed.
â€œI have not received the court order. It has to be forwarded to the Police headquarters in Kampala. We will examine the situation before we reopen â€ he said.