Constitutional court sitting in Mbale is expected to deliver judgement on the controversial Age limit bill today. Five justices led by Deputy Chief Justice Alphonse Chigamoy Owiny-Dollo, Remmy Kasule, Kenneth Kakuru, Cheborion Barishaki and Elizabeth Musoke are expected to deliver the judgement at 9:30 a:m .
Each judge will read their own decisions and the reasons thereto.
The court will determine whether Sections 3 and 7 of the Constitution Amendment Act which amended Article 102 (b) to remove the age limit on the presidency are inconsistent with Articles 21(3) and 21(5) of the Constitution; whether Sections 2 and 8 of the Act extending or enlarging the term of Parliament from five years to seven is unconstitutional; whether the process culminating in the restoration of the two-term limits for the president was unconstitutional.
The current five-year term for president and parliament ends in 2021, but the amendment extended their tenure by two years, elapsing in 2023. If the extensions are upheld by the court, the next elections will be held in 2023 instead of 2021. The court will also uphold or quash the two-year extension of the term of LCs from five years to seven.
The Judiciary’s senior communications officer, Solomon Muyita says the main court room where the judgment will be read will only be open to the five petitioners, their lawyers, a small number of diplomats and media. The courtroom adjacent to the main one will have giant screens to televise the reading of the verdict.
Muyita said this courtroom will accommodate Members of Parliament, a section of the media, local politicians and VIPs while the general public will follow the proceedings from the court’s car parking lot where tents will be erected with giant screens and loud speakers.
‘ ‘The constitutional court will hand Museveni his ‘loaf’ but it’ll be tragic if it endorsed the violence in &out of parliament, disruption of public consultation, blockade of media coverage of parliament, blockade of opposition MPs from using media et al witnessed during the process’’ said human Rights Lawyer Nicholas Opiyo.