The election of Isaac Joackino Etuuka as the Upper Madi Member of Parliament has been nullified.
Justices Remmy Kasule, Richard Buteera and Alfonse Owiny-Dollo of the Court of Appeal has ruled that the Electoral Commission (EC) wrongly nominated and included him on the ballot paper.
Court has therefore ordered the EC to hold fresh elections to fill the position now declared vacant.
The Court of Appeal decision overrules that of Arua High Court judge John Eudes Keitirima who had ruled that Etuuka’s election was valid.
Etuuka’s nomination as the NRM flag -bearer was cancelled on the eve of the election. His challenger Martin Drito had secured a court order to that effect. The EC then published public notices showing that Etuuka was not a valid candidate although his name appeared on the ballot paper.
Court of Appeal Justices based on the contradiction that an unqualified candidate was declared winner to annul Etuuka’s election.
Court has ordered EC and Etuuka to pay the court costs to John Arumadiru Drazu, the appellant.
In the similar development, Opposition Forum for Democratic Change flag bearer for the just concluded Kamuli Municipality by-election Salam Musumba has dismissed the election result describing the whole process as illegitimate.
This is after she lost to the NRM candidate Rehema Watongola who was last evening re-elected to Parliament after she garnered 8,726 votes against her closest challenger, Musumba’s 5,778.
However Musumba says the whole process was a sham marred by electoral violence, voter bribery, intimidating and other irregularities.
She says she will decide the next course of action after the Easter holiday.
According to election observers, yesterday’s by-election was marred by widespread violence, chaos and confusion.
However, the Electoral Commission Chairperson Simon Byabakama describes it as “a smooth by-election” that defied prophets of doom.
Watongola’s win in 2016 was later nullified by court on account that she lacked the requisite academic papers.
She later got the papers and was cleared by her party and the Electoral Commission to contest again.
Other candidates in the race were Prossy Naikoba, Samuel Walujo, and Michael Kiboome, all independents.