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Luwero Diocese ordered to pay shs18m over cancellation of Bishop election

Kampala, (UG): The Church of Uganda (COU) has directed the Anglican diocese of Luwero to pay Shillings 18m as legal costs related to the nullification of the election of the Bishop-elect.

This directive is outlined in a December 21, 2023 letter, from the Provincial Secretary, Rev. Canon William Ongeng, addressed to Rt. Rev. James William Ssebaggala, the Caretaker Bishop of the Anglican Diocese of Luwero.

On June 28, during a House of Bishops session held at Kabalega Resort Hotel in Hoima, a decision was made to nullify the election of Rev. Canon Kasana Ssemakula as the fourth bishop of Luwero Diocese.

This came after a group of Christians, led by Kenneth R. Kikabi from St. Mark’s Cathedral, petitioned the Archbishop of the Church of Uganda, Dr. Stephen Samuel Kaziimba Mugalu.

They accused Kasana of fathering a child outside of wedlock, contravening the Ten Commandments and Canon laws.

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However, this decision did not sit well with some Christians and clergymen in Luwero. Subsequently, seven individuals, led by David Lule Mutyaba Muzzanganda, petitioned the Luwero High Court.

Their demand was a declaration that the nullification of Kasana’s election was null, void, and legally ineffective.

The petitioners included Patrick Kizito, Stephen Mutebi, Wasswa Paul Tumwebaze, Godfrey Bwenene Sabavuma, Fred Mubiru Zigwa, and Joyce Mawanda Mazzi, represented by Lubega and Company advocates and Waymo Advocates.

In October, the Principal Judge, Dr. Flavian Zeija, ruled that the case brought by some Christians in Luwero Diocese against Archbishop Stephen Kaziimba Mugalu, contesting the nullification of the then Bishop-elect Canon Kasana Ssemakula, lacked merit and was dismissed. Dr. Zeija stated that religious controversies cannot be subject to civil court inquiry.

The recent letter, a copy of which Uganda Radio Network (URN) obtained, reminds Bishop Ssebaggala that certain Christians in the Diocese sued the Church after the cancellation of Rev. Can. Godfrey Kasana Ssemakula as Bishop-elect.

Consequently, the Church engaged Agaba Muhairwe and Company Advocates to represent it during the court battle.

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“The purpose of this letter therefore is to request that you arrange for payment of Shillings 18,000,000 to Agaba Muhairwe and Company Advocates for the services offered to the Church,“ the letter reads in part.

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