The National Unity Platform (NUP) members and well wishers will have to wait a little longer to know the party’s legality status.
This is after the High Court in Kampala has deferred to next week Wednesday, the delivery of the much-awaited ruling in the ownership contestation of National Unity and Reconciliation and Development Party (NURP), from which NUP was renamed and handed over to presidential aspirant, Kyagulanyi Ssentamu Robert alias Bobi Wine.
Two of NURP’s founders Mr Difas Basile and Mr Hassan Twala, petitioned the High Court in Kampala contesting the process under which Mr Kyagulanyi had acquired the party.
They claimed Mr Moses Nkonge Kibalama, the founding president of the party, had illegally changed the party’s name and transferred its leadership to Bobi Wine without their knowledge and consent
On September 25, the presiding judge, Mr Musa Ssekaana, said he would give his ruling today (Friday) to resolve the controversy over the name and its leadership.
However, the Judiciary’s Principal Communications Officer, Mr Solomon Muyita, last evening revealed that the ruling is not ready for delivery today.
“The judge has said, the ruling will not take place tomorrow as anticipated because the parties filed their submissions on Tuesday. It was not humanly possible for him to read through the submissions and deliver the decision tomorrow (today) as slated,” Mr Muyita said by telephone yesterday.
“The new date for the ruling is now Wednesday next week and this will be done by way of e-mail so there is no need of the litigants to come to court physically on that day,” he added.
The case involves two people; formerly of NURP- Mr Difas Basile and Mr Hassan Twala, who are seeking deregistration of Bobi’s renamed NUP.
The duo petitioners contend that it was illegal to change their party name without consulting them.
Bobi Wine is jointly sued with NUP party, Mr Kibalama, Mr David Lewis Rubongoya, Ms Aisha Kabanda, Mr Joel Ssenyonyi (spokesperson for NUP), Ms Flavia Kalule Nabagabe, Mr Fred Nyanzi Ssentamu, the Electoral Commission, and the Attorney General.
Mr Basile and Mr Twala, are further seeking court declaration that the resolution dated May 12, 2017 nominating Bobi Wine as the NUP presidential flag bearer for the 2021 general elections, is illegal and in contravention of the party constitution.
Justice Ssekaana also denied social media allegations that his life is in danger for presiding over the said highly political case.
“The judge also denies being under any threats from anybody and that he has been going about his routine work as usual,” Mr Muyita further said.
Still at the last hearing, while being cross-examined, when put to task to say who the leader of NUP is, Mr Kibalama said it is Bobi Wine, whom he affirmed had been elected by a delegates’ conference in Kakiri two months ago.
He also told court during the same tense cross-examination that upon handing over the party to Bobi Wine and group, he has since been sidelined.
Mr Kibalama also said people who should be in the rightful positions, have since been thrown out of the party, a move that made him file new evidence in the case.