MUBENDE: High Court in Mubende has nullified Joyce Bagala’s election as Mityana Woman Member of Parliament and called for fresh elections. This follows a petition by Lands Minister Judith Nabakooba.
Bagala said she would appeal the decision by court to call for a by-election.
Nabakooba dragged Bagala to court after she trounced her with a margin of 16,000 votes in the January 14, 2021 polls.
She accused Bagala and the Electoral Commission of failing to ensure secure conditions necessary for the conduct of the election, which kept away registered voters from exercising their right to vote freely. She alleges that presiding officers from the Commission connived with Bagala and her agents to execute a well-organized scheme to procure prohibited persons to vote and facilitate impersonation of voters and multiple voting.
She also accused Bagala’s camp of intimidating her agents, invalidating valid votes cast for her, obstructing voters and giving voters pre-ticked ballot papers. However, during cross-examination, Bagala denied any wrongdoing and told the court that although the election was not perfect, it was free and fair.
Nabakooba during elections
During a recent hearing, she also revealed that one of her agents identified as Norah Nantongo asked for Shillings 1 million to bribe voters, which she rejected.
However, Mityana District Returning Officer Stephen Makubuya told the court that the elections were free and fair since he did not receive any written complaint from the agents nor electoral officials.
On the issue of signing declaration forms before the closure of the polls, Makubuya admitted it was in contravention of the training given to the officials before the elections commenced.