Chief Justice Alfonse Owiny-Dollo yesterday declined to step aside from hearing the presidential election petition filed by Mr Robert Kyagulanyi, aka Bobi Wine, challenging President Museveni’s election.
Mr Male Mabirizi, a lawyer, had filed an application in the Supreme Court seeking Chief Justice Owiny-Dollo to withdraw from hearing the presidential election petition against Mr Museveni on account of the conflict of interest.
Mr Mabirizi said the Chief Justice was President Museveni’s defence lawyer in the 2006 presidential petition, and thus cannot be impartial in this petition.
“I have perused the application and the supporting affidavits and listened carefully to the submissions by the applicant (Mr Mabirizi). I decline to recuse. The reasons I will give in my detailed ruling to be delivered on notice,” Chief Justice Owiny-Dollo ruled.
Last week, Mr Mabirizi petitioned the Supreme Court contending that the Chief Justice was unlikely to deliver justice in the ongoing presidential election petition since he is presiding over a case against his former client Mr Museveni. He wanted the head of the Judiciary to step aside from the case.
On Monday, Mr Kyagulanyi announced at a press conference in Kampala that he was withdrawing his petition, citing alleged bias by three of the judges, including Chief Justice Owiny-Dollo.