KIU bar student sues NRM over election rules



A student of Kampala International University (KIU) student has sued the ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM) party over “illegal” NRM Primaries Elections Regulations 2015.

James Okori, a law student, seeks to contest as a Member of Parliament for Busiro South Constituency in Wakiso district dislodging former Vice President, Prof. Gilbert Bukenya.

Represented by lawyer Isaac K. Ssemakadde of Centre for Legal Aid, Okori filed the suit yesterday days after former Prime Minister, Amama Mbabazi, wrote to the NRM party Chairman, President Yoweri Museveni, complaining about illegal regulations.

Mbabazi refused to pay the Shs20 demanded by the party before he could pick nomination forms to stand for party chairman and presidential flag bearer.

Later the NRM Electoral Commission, Tanga Odoi, announced that they had changed the rules.

Nonetheless, Okori says the guidelines are invalid because NRM does not have powers to interfere with any ones fundamental right to take part in party primaries.

He says a number of ‘would-be contenders’ cannot afford the charge of Shs 2m that is required of every parliamentary aspirant (as in his case).

Okori equally challenges a provision that bars candidates from contesting as independents after losing in party primaries saying that persons who drafted the guidelines lack respect for democracy, human rights and rule of law.

The preliminary hearing of his case kicked off Tuesday morning at High Court Civil Division at Twed Towers Kampala.

He seeks a temporary injunction and a court order directing NRM to temporarily halt charging fees until the case is disposed of by court.

The student wants court to compel NRM to allow all interested aspirants to contest in its primaries without paying nomination fees.

Judge Yasin Nyanzi has set Thursday July 23, 10:00an as the date for hearing the application.

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