The Uganda high court has sent back to prison on Wednesday. the Makerere University Researcher Fellow Dr.Stella Nyanzi and cleared the way for a compulsory mental examination, her lawyer say.
The academic appeared at the high court to seek bail after a lower court refused to hear the case. She also wanted the high court to stop the lower magistrate’s court considering the state’s request to order a mental examination for her.
Eron Kiiza, one of Nyanzi’s lawyers, said that the judge ordered the magistrate’s court to hear her bail application, and sent her back to prison until May 10.
“The high court did also say the… proceedings for her mental examination should continue and be expedited,” Kiiza said.
When she was initially charged, state prosecutors asked the court to order a mental examination.
Nyanzi’s legal team objected to the request and one of her attorneys has said authorities are aiming to have the academic declared “a fool, a mad person” which would qualify her to be confined as a mental patient.
However, Justice Kabanda has faulted Chief Magistrate James Eremye Mawanda for refusing to entertain Dr.Nyanzi’s bail application soon after taking her plea on charges of cyber harassment and offensive communication.
The judge emphasized that the magistrate has powers to hear an application inquiring into a suspect’s mental status; thus declining to strike out the state’s application.
She has thus ordered that the magistrate expeditiously hears the said application.
Dr. Stella Nyanzi has now been sent back to Luzira prison until May 10th when she returns to Buganda Road Court.
Dr. Stella Nyanzi offenses stem from posts on her popular Facebook page where she has criticized Museveni and his wife for breaking an election pledge to offer free sanitary pads to schoolgirls.