Special Reports

Nyanzi lawyer tells Lokodo to zip his mouth

Ethics minister Simon Lokodo

Ethics minister Simon Lokodo

On Monday April 18, 2016, Dr Stella Nyanzi, a researcher at Makerere University Institute of social research stripped as a way of protesting closure of her office, by the executive director of (MISR) professor Mahmood Mamdani.

The lecturer who is alleged to have adamantly refused to teach 25%, according to Mamdani, was warned but never seemed to change and instead did contrarily to what the contract was saying by doing private research.

“She does not do any institution research at MISR; she has never presented a research proposal in her five year stay here , Stella Nyanzi is doing her own research,” said Mamdani.

Later on, Nyanzi threatened to strip which she finally did claiming she never applied to teach but to be a researcher.

According to Prof Venansius Baryamureeba, former vice chancellor Makerere university, Nyanzi may have personal issues with Prof Mamdani but this cannot stop her from undertaking her duties.

“She must understand that MISR has an executive director as a head where she works as a research fellow,” he wrote.

After all, he who calls a piper calls the tune.

Prof. John Ddumba Ssentamu, Makerere University vice chancellor accepted that Dr Nyanzi is his relative; a relationship believed to have caused Nyanzi’s actions (including the stripping).

Lawyer attacks Lokodo

Nyanzi’s lawyer Isaac Kimeze [who happened to be one of Chris Mubiru’s lawyers] says the law does not criminalise Dr Nyanzi’s acts, and that nudity has for long been used as a form of peaceful protests.

The lawyer told the minister of State for Ethics and Integrity, Hon. Fr. Simon Lokodo to keep his mouth shut in the matter.

“Mr Lokodo should keep his mouth shut in regards to challenged Anti-Porn Act. Every statement he makes is in subjudice.”

Kimeze who is not about to give up on Dr Nyanzi’s case said while appearing on NBS TV last week that Ugandans were not exhaustively consulted on anti-porn law and that the Act was drafted in a sloppy overly enthusiastic manner by those against the freedom of expression.

“Anti-Pornography Act is currently being challenged in court by a number of Civil society organisations. All criminal prosecutions under this law on hold.”

He said given that Anti-Porn law is currently being challenged, Lokodo has nothing to whip against Dr. Nyanzi.

“We can’t legislate on everything including morality. Nudity is not a pressing issue in Uganda. We can’t legislate on everything including morality. Nudity is not a pressing issue in Uganda.”

He said for example, the Mubiru case was always a weak case and that the Director of Public Prosecutions should be ashamed.

“Witnesses in the Chris Mubiru case were the worst kind of liars. One was a self-confessed homosexual and the other lied about his age.”

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