The High Court in Masaka has dismissed an application filed by State Minister for Computer Technology, Alintuma Nsambu, seeking to transfer hearing of the defamation case against him to the High Court in Kampala.
Nsambu was dragged to court by Masaka Grade 1 Magistrate, Godfrey Kaweesa, who accused him of defamation through his lawyers, Nyanzi and Co. advocates.
The accusations stem from a news conference last year, in which Nsambu accused Kaweesa of soliciting from him a bribe of undisclosed amount money in return for a favorable ruling in a case in which he was accused of issuing a bounced cheque.
Nsambu was found guilty of issuing a bounced cheque of 1.6 million shillings to the Women Enterprises Association of Rakai in 2002. He was ordered to immediately pay back double the amount of money borrowed.
Shortly after the ruling, Nsambu told journalists that the only reason he was declared guilty was because he refused to give Kaweesa a bribe to rule in his favor. He however failed to substantiate his claims prompting Kaweesa to sue him.
Nsambu however sought to have the hearing of his case transferred to Kampala on grounds that te complainant could influence the outcome of the case because he is attached to the Masaka high court.
He also argued that some of his witnesses some of whom are employees at Masaka court could be intimidated by the magistrate.
But the High Court Judge, Kibuuka Musoke, dismissed Nsambu's application on grounds that the High court is independent and hearing of the case could not be influenced by a mere grade one magistrate.
Kibuuka Musoke also accused the minister of disrespecting court by snubbing the hearings.