The Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP) has taken over the case in which lawyer Male Mabirizi accuses Chief Justice of Uganda Alfonse Owiny-Dollo of mishandling the election petition filed and later withdrawn by Robert Kyagulanyi, aka Bobi Wine.
The Chief State Attorney in the DPP office, Ms Joan Keko, on Tuesday, March 23, wrote to the Chief Magistrate Buganda Road Court, informing him of the decision.
“Your Worship, The Office Director of Public Prosecutions under Article 120 (3) (c) of the 1995 Constitution and Section 43 (1) (a) of the Magistrates Courts Act Cap 16, has decided to take over and continue criminal proceedings instituted by Mr. MALE H. MABIRIZI K. KIWANUKA against Hon Justice ALFONSE CHIGAMOY OWINY-DOLLO effective immediately,” the letter, also copied to Mabirizi and Justice Dollo, reads in part.
“As stipulated under Section 43 (1) (c) of the Magistrates Courts Act, Mr. MALE H. MABIRIZI K. KIWANUKA (private prosecutor) is required to give all reasonable information pertaining to the proceedings and furnish all documents in his possession or under his control to us; we thus request that he be directed to do so,” it adds.
The charges arise from the recently withdrawn Presidential Election Petition by Bobi Wine, and the ensuing altercation that disrupted the Supreme Court last week.
Mabirizi has drafted a charge sheet with two offenses; one of showing disrespect to court proceedings and another for causing obstruction or disturbance in the course of a Judicial proceeding. He then submitted them before the Buganda Road Chief Magistrate asking her to issue a warrant of arrest against Owiny-Dollo such that he can come to take plea and then get convicted on the two offenses against him.
The Private Prosecutor alleges in his yet to be approved charge sheet that on March 18th and 19th 2021, Owiny-Dollo showed disrespect, obstructed and caused disturbance in the course of a judicial proceedings to Lady Justice Esther Kisakye.
On the said date, Kisakye was conducting court proceedings in the Supreme Court arising from Kyagulanyi’s Petition when Owiny-Dollo allegedly ordered his police guards to take the lady Justice hostage thereby confiscating her file. The charge sheet also indicates that Owiny-Dollo ordered for closure and dismantling of the court tent, disconnection of power and sound system before ordering court staff not to attend Kisakye’s court and closed down the court premises to prevent her from reading her dissenting ruling.