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Constitutional court halts Kabaziguruka trial before the Army Court

The Constitutional Court has issued an interim order halting the trial of Nakawa Municipality MP Michael Kabaziguruka before the General Court Martial  until the final hearing and determination of a petition he filed questioning the legality of the army court.

Kabaziguruka in November petitioned the Constitutional Court, seeking it to declare the General Court Martial and other military courts unconstitutionally established. He faces treachery charges before the General Court Martial and is out on bail granted by Kampala High Court.

Justice Remmy Kasule ordered that the trial for treachery that was scheduled to commence January 19th, before seven members of  that court,  is suspended until January 31, 2017.

The order was issued in the presence of counsel Jane  Francis Nafuma who represented the Attorney General and MP Medard Ssegona, Kabaziguruka’s Lawyer.

Kabaziguruka is accused of conniving with serving officers to contrive a plot to overthrow the Government of Uganda between February and June last year.

Kabaziguruka was arrested in June 2016 and charged before the General Court Martial in Makindye with treachery and offences relating to security which the prosecution says he committed in connivance with several UPDF officers.

The FDC legislator spent several months on remand at Kigo Prison until October last year when he was given bail by the High Court.

He petitioned the Constitutional Court calling for dissolution of the General Court Martial saying army courts are merely tribunals set up for purposes of disciplining errant military officers and not courts of law within the meaning of the constitution.

 

Kabaziguruka accuses the 6th Parliament  of over stepping its powers by creating section 197 of the UPDF  Act that  establishes  the General Court Martial, instead of leaving it as tribunal to instill  discipline among  UPDF soldiers.

In the petition Kabaziguruka also seeks for orders discharging him and any other persons facing trial before the court that he terms as  a merely an administrative tribunal.

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