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Muhoozi suffers setback in bid for presidency as Lawyer sues him over partisan politics

According to the lawyer, Muhoozi being Museveni’s son has continued to enjoy preferential treatment from the UPDF as he participates in partisan politics which is a violation of the Constitution

A poster showing Muhoozi's Presidency Bid during his Birthday Celebrations showcased by his supporters in Kampala two weeks ago (Photo/File)

KAMPALA, UGANDA: The first son and commander of the UPDF Land Forces Lt. Gen. Muhoozi Kainerugaba has been dragged to court by a city lawyer accusing him of being a partisan officer after his declaration to bid for presidency yet he is an active serving soldier.

The lawyer identified as Gawaya Tegule Kainerugaba that he wants the UPDF to discipline Gen. Muhoozi for going against its code of conduct saying the General’s alleged involvement in politics in the past months is illegal.

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The petition filed on Friday before the constitutional court jointly accuses Gen Muhoozi in his capacity as the Commander of the Land Forces, the Chief of Defence Forces in the UPDF who has a duty to oversee the military arm of government, and the Attorney General as the principal legal advisor to government.

In his petition, Lawyer Tegule notes that; “The acts of the first respondent dubbed as MK@48 including national and district “birthday celebrations” as well as the political pronouncements in general and the manifest presidential campaigns in particular on the first respondent’s Twitter handle @MK are inconsistent with a contravention of Article 208(2) of the Constitution which provides that the UPDF shall be non-partisan, national in character, patriotic, professional, disciplined, productive and subordinate to the civilian authority as established under this constitution.”

Tegule in petition fronts tweets by Lt Gen Muhoozi Kainerugaba,  photos of T.shirts with Gen Muhoozi’s pictures and inscriptions of “Muhoozi is the next president” as some of the evidence to show that the UPDF land forces commander is involved in a political campaign which he insists is illegal and against the Constitution of Uganda.

“The acts of the first respondent and the security infrastructure in Uganda comprising of the UPDF and Uganda Police Force and other security agencies in charging part of the expenditure of the birthday party and other attendant activities on the Consolidated Fund is contrary to the provisions of the Constitution in articles 2 and 154.”

According to the lawyer, Muhoozi being President Museveni’s son has continued to enjoy preferential treatment from the UPDF as he participates in partisan politics which is also a violation of the Constitution by also failure of the army leadership on executing its duties.

“Previously, acts with political overtones by serving officers like Gen David Tinyefuza(now Sejusa) and Lt Gen Henry Tumukunde have been met with quick, malevolent crackdowns by the UPDF which included suspensions and court proceedings in the name of disciplinary sanctions a manifestation of discriminatory approach in application and enforcement of the law,” Tegule says.

The lawyer now wants the Constitutional Court to declare that the actions of Lt Gen Muhoozi Kainerugaba, his conduct and character as highlighted above while still a serving army officer contravenes articles 2,3, 21, 208(2), 208(3), 2019, and 210 of the Constitution.

“The petitioner seeks declarations that by violating the constitution as contended here in, the first respondent committed the offense of treason and is liable to prosecution in accordance with the law as laid down.”

Tegule also wants court to declare that it is unconstitutional for the Chief of Defence Forces and the Attorney General to give legal advice to the first respondent.

he has also challenged the court to issue orders that prohibit Lt Gen Muhoozi Kainerugaba from carrying on his political activities while he is still a serving army officer, be prosecuted for treason but also the CDF and Attorney General discharge their constitutional mandate without fear or favour and with effectiveness and efficiency to the last drop.

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