Maverick Lawyer Drags Minister Mao To Court
By Our Reporter
Lawyer Male Mabirizi has instituted criminal proceedings against Justice and Constitutional Affairs Minister Nobert Mao, over his recent memorandum of understanding with President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni.
The charges stem from the 42 Clause Memorandum of Understanding signed at State House Entebbe between Museveni who is also the Chairperson of the ruling National Resistance Movement party and Mao as President General of the Democratic Party.
At the signing which took place on July 22nd, 2022 which was witnessed by the Secretary General of Democratic Party Gerald Siranda Blacks and NRM’s Richard Todwong, the parties agreed to share political power and also foster constitutionalism and respect for human rights.
The parties also agreed to work with each other in supporting the overall governance agenda and supporting parliamentary votes on matters in confidence and supply for the full term of the 11th parliament.
However, in his application filed before the Entebbe Chief Magistrates Court, Mabirizi acting as a Private Prosecutor has preferred four charges including common nuisance, disobedience of statutory duty and conspiracy to defraud against Mao as the President General of the Democratic Party and its Secretary General Gerald Siranda Blacks.
Mabirizi alleges that Mao and Siranda and others still at large, between July 20th and 27th 2022, well aware that their respective five year terms expired in 2020, signed a document titled ‘Memorandum of Understanding’ with Museveni holding out as Chairman NRM which was an act not authorized by law thereby causing annoyance or inconvenience to the public.
He also accuses Mao and Siranda for having refused to vacate offices their respective offices and going ahead to sign the contested Memorandum of Understanding which he says is an act or omission forbidden by written law.
Mabirizi further accuses Mao in particular of having taken oath as Justice and Constitutional Affairs Minister while at the same time holding out as President Democratic Party, an Opposition Political Party which was not authorized by law and it also reportedly caused annoyance or inconvenience to the public.
According to Mabirizi’s charges, the two also conspired to defraud when they signed the document in exchange for selfish positions such as Minister for Justice and Member of East African Assembly -EALA in respect of Siranda.
Mabirizi now wants the Entebbe Chief Magistrates Court to summon the two accused persons Mao and Siranda to take plea and be sent to jail for the offenses he has leveled against them.
On August 8th 2022, the Democratic Party members who were aggrieved with the decision taken by Siranda and Mao to work with the ruling government put in place a committee of 13 people led by Member of Parliament Dr Lulume Bayiga to among others; welcome back all Democratic Party members who for some reasons had left the party and also to steer the Party through what they described as turbulent times of the abdication by Mao and some other executive members until an interim leadership is established by the party organs.
“It is thus vivid that notwithstanding the busy schedule of his new office, the oath of Minister stops Honorable Nobert Mao from holding the office of the President General of the Democratic Party,” wrote the Committee Spokesperson Fred Kayondo. “It is imperative in the circumstances that Honorable Mao concentrates on being a Minister in NRM government and be pardoned from the duties of the President General of the Democratic Party to avoid conflict of interest and causing constitutional crisis in our country.”
The Entebbe Chief Magistrates Court is yet to summon Mao and Siranda to take plea on the charges that attract a punishment of seven years in jail upon conviction.