Mbale high court on Friday nullified Saleh Kambaâ€™s election as Member of Parliament for Kibuku County on grounds that he bribed voters during the February 2011 elections. Former State Minister for Water and Environment, Jennifer Namayangu had dragged Kamba and the Electoral Commission to court on grounds that the electoral laws were flouted in the elections.
Former State Minister for Water and Environment, Jennifer Namayangu had dragged Kamba and the Electoral Commission to court on grounds that the electoral laws were flouted in the elections.
Namuyangu had contended that Kamba and his agents bribed voters and in some polling stations her agents were chased away to pave way for electoral malpractice.
In his ruling, Mbale resident Judge, Mike Chibita agreed with the petitioner that there was none compliance on the part of the Electoral Commission to organize credible elections. Chibita however noted that it was not credible enough to overturn the results.
But the judge ruled that that the bribery allegations against Kamba are substantive enough to overturn the result of the elections. Justice Chibita stated that the petitioner proved beyond reasonable doubt that Kamba bribed voters by giving them money to buy hoes.
He stated that an act of bribery is a very serious offence according to section 87 of the parliamentary elections act 2005. He ordered the electoral commission to organize for fresh elections in Kibuku County, Kibuku district. The judge also ordered both the Electoral Commission and Kamba to meet the costs of the petition.
Before the ruling Kamba arrived in the courtroom while flashing victory sign and remained in a jovial mood occasionally exchanging pleasantries with his supporters.
At one moment, he attacked a middle aged man, whom he accused of swearing an affidavit at one time claiming that he studied with him.
However Kamba’s happiness was short lived as the ruling turned against him.
Outside court, he said he would appeal against the ruling.
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Namayangu, who joined her supporters shortly after the ruling to celebrate the victory, said justice had finally prevailed. She said several of her supporters were tortured by Kamba and his agents.
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The court ruling adds to Kamba’s political woes. In June this year, the parliamentary appointments committee declined to approve him for a ministerial post after President Yoweri Museveni had nominated him as the minister in charge of Bunyoro Affairs.