Appeals Court upholds Ssematimba’s victory as Busiro MP

By Ruth Anderah

The Court of Appeal has confirmed that NRM’s Peter Ssematimba as the validly elected Member of Parliament for Busiro South constituency in Wakiso district.

The ruling was made by three judges led by the Out-going Deputy Chief Justice Steven Kavuma, Catherine Bamugemereire and Cheborion Barishaki.

The judges overturned the High court’s decision of Justice Lydia Mugambe that had nullified Ssematimba’s election on grounds of lack of requisite academic qualifications.

The court of Appeal faulted justice Mugambe for misdirecting herself on the law regarding issuance of certificates of equivalence by National Council of Higher Education and drawing a wrong conclusion to cancel Ssematimba’s certificate of A’level equivalence issued by NCHE.

The justices have ruled that justice Mugambe had no right to interfere with NCHE’s work since the certificate of equivalence it issued to Ssematimba was not the one under challenge but rather his academic documents from USA.

The court has also faulted Justice Mugambe for rejecting Ssematimba’s original copy of his Diploma in Electronic and Computer Technology and other pieces of evidence of his former classmates from Pacific Coast Technical Institute in USA that proves that he indeed attended the said college before its closure in 1989.

The above coupled with the failure of DP’s Stephen Ssekigozi to discharge his burden of proving that Ssematimba’s academic documents are forged was the basis for the court of appeal to allow Ssematimba’s appeal.

The justices have also ordered that Ssekigozi pays Ssematimba costs of the petition he filed at the High court and for this appeal.