Deputy Attorney General, Mwesigwa Rukutana has said Ugandans have a reason to rejoice after the Supreme Court upheld the constitutional amendments in regards the lower and upper limit.
The Supreme Court in a 4:3 majority judgment dismissed a challenge by three parties who had challenged the constitutional court ruling that had upheld age limit clauses from the constitution by parliament.
“The decision of the constitutional court is upheld and this appeal fails,” said Justice Eldad Mwanguya who read the final verdict on behalf of the Chief Justice Bart Katureebe who was unwell.
Speaking to the Nile Post shortly after court, Rukutana, who was one of the government lawyers said the decision by court was a gift to Ugandans.
“I congratulate everyone for this triumph. This calls for every Ugandan to celebrate for democracy and rule of law have taken root in our country,”Rukutana said.
Describing the judgment as being well balanced, Rukutana noted that it had represented the will of the people who had in the first place requested to have the age limit removed from the constitution.
However, Democratic Party president Norbert Mao said the judgment was a mockery of democracy and rule of law in the country, noting that it was illegitimate.
“Ugandans who had hopes in this court are disappointed .We respect the judgment but consider it illegitimate,” Mao said shortly after court.
“You can’t torture legislators and at the end of the day you say the outcome was clean. This habit of private members acting on behalf of the dictator to bring issues to parliament needs to stop.”
For Mukono Municipality MP, Betty Nambooze who was among the legislators beaten during the age limit scuffle in parliament could not believe the verdict of the Supreme Court.
“Now you can beat Nambooze, break her back and admit her rights were violated but not substantially. May be the court wanted to see my head cut off to know that I was badly beaten,”Nambooze noted.
She said the Supreme Court had betrayed the people who had hope in it.
The verdict by the Supreme Court in Uganda meant that President Museveni, who will be above 75 year of age will be free to stand for his sixth term in 2021.
The National Resistance Movement’s Central Executive Committee (CEC) early this year granted Museveni a life presidency card by unanimously endorsing him as party leader and flag bearer for the upcoming elections in 2021 and beyond.
NRM MPs also gave Museveni green light to continue leading the country.
“We are at a most critical and delicate juncture in the process of transformation of our country. This cannot be the point to let go of our visionary and unifier,” said NRM spokesperson, Rogers Mulindwa in a statement.
“We need Mzee more now than ever before.”