Court stays Shs3m MP nomination fees


Angry youth appear in court to challenge the increment of Parliamentary nomination fees. [Photo by JoanLobsy]

Constitutional Court has Tuesday threw out a petition by aspiring Members of Parliament challenging the prerequisite Shs 3m in nomination fees.

Parliament recently amended section one of the Parliamentary Elections Act of 2015 setting Shs 3m nomination fees to be paid to electoral commission by aspirants before running for parliamentary seats.

Following the passing of the bill, two concerned citizens; Iddi Ouma and Paul Ssembajjwe, on November 4, applied to the Constitutional Court for an interim injunction to stop Electoral Commission and the Attorney General from demanding the nomination fees from parliamentary aspirants.

Ssembajjwe feared that if the EC was allowed to implement the law, he would suffer irreparable damage.

It meant if he failed to raise the money, he would be thrown out of the parliamentary race.

Through his lawyers of M/S Ssemwanga, Muwazi & Co Advocates, Ssembajjwe sought an injunction that would restrain the EC from enforcing a law which he said was unfair to the youth who are a majority in the country and have little or no income to afford such an exorbitant fee.

Unfortunately, on Tuesday, Justice Remmy Kasule ruled that aspirants intending to contest for Member of Parliament should pay the Shs3m as required.

Kasule feared that issuing an interim order against the nomination fee would stop the entire nomination, campaign and election process for presidency and Members of Parliament which are already in motion.

He said the for example presidential candidates have already paid the Shs 20m as reflected in the amended Presidential Elections Act which was passed at the same time with the Parliamentary Elections Act.

Already the electoral commission has set dates for nomination of Kampala Members of Parliament will to be held at UMA Conference Hall at Lugogo on Wednesday.

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