OIL Bribery Scandal: AG appeals 13B Costs Award

The Attorney General Peter Nyombi has appealed against the recent taxation award of 12.9 billion shillings to city lawyer, Severino Twinobusingye.
The appeal signed by the Director for Civil Litigation, Cheborion Barishaki, was filed before the Constitutional Court on Friday evening and it is set to be heard by a single judge who is not yet known since the appeal has just been filed.
Recently, Constitutional Court registrar, Erias Kisawuzi, awarded 12.9 billion shillings to Twinobusingye, a supporter of Prime Minister Amama Mbabazi, as legal costs. The award has since caused a lot of public outcry.
Twinobusingye’s lawyers during the hearing argued and justified the huge amounts of legal costs on grounds that the petition was complex as it required them to carry out extensive research.
The award was in connection to a case in which the city lawyer had won after he sued government challenging Parliament’s resolution to ask Prime Minister Amama Mbabazi and two other cabinet ministers to step aside as they investigated them over bribery allegations in the oil sector.

The other ministers were; Hillary Onek, formerly for energy but now in Internal Affairs, and Sam Kutesa, for Foreign Affairs.

Twinobusingye who described himself as a concerned citizen and sued the attorney general, claimed the three ministers were denied a fair hearing before Parliament resolved to have them step aside to pave way for investigations.
In the appeal, the AG is also asking the court to avail him with a certified copy of the taxation proceedings and ruling in the matter for purposes of preparing and pursuing the intended appeal.
Last week, Deputy Attorney General Fred Ruhindi, while appearing before Parliament, described the 12.9 billion shilling taxation award as ‘astronomical’ and ‘ridiculous’.
Ruhindi pledged that government would appeal against the monstrous figure and that he had never seen such an award in Uganda and East Africa at large.
The deputy attorney general further assured the country that no penny would be paid out to Twinobusingye until the appeal is determined.
The matter arose in October 2011, when Parliament was recalled from recess for a special oil debate to discuss allegations that the ministers had received millions of Euros in bribes from Tullow Oil, one of the oil exploration companies in the country. It was during this debate on October 11 that the resolutions that Twinobusingye challenged were made

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