The case in which some members of the Tooro Kingdom clan council sued the King of Tooro, Oyo Nyimba Kabamba Iguru Rukiidi IV for making unconstitutional decisions has failed to take off at Fort Portal High Court, western Uganda.
Early this year, Tooro clan leaders led by George Kusemererwa dragged the King to court challenging his decisions which include the suspension of the kingdom constitution and illegal appointment of Steven Kaliba as the Kingdom premier.
King Oyo suspended the Kingdom’s 1999 constitution and subsquently appointed an eight-member committee to amend some of its sections. this move was rejected by a section of clan leaders
However the case has dragged on since April, when the date for the first hearing was fixed.
On Tuesday morning, Kusemererwa and his lawyer, Johnson Musana appeared at Fort Portal High Court for hearing of the case. However King Oyo’s legal team wasn’t at the court.
Kusemererwa and his lawyer held a meeting with the Grade II magistrate, Nathan Mulindwa who said that the case can’t proceed, because Justice Dan Akiiki Kiiza, the Fort Portal resident judge was presiding over High Court sessions in other districts in the region.
Mulindwa told Musana and his client that the case will be adjourned to November 4th for the next hearing.
This is the third time that the case has been adjourned. The first was in April when it was adjourned to June 14th. However the then resident judge, Justice Mike Chibita failed to turn up and it was adjourned to October 10th. Chibita was later appointed the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).
However one of King Oyo’s lawyers in Fort Portal who preferred anonymity told local media that there are plans to have the case settled out of courts of law.
In a telephone interview, Kusemererwa confirmed that he has been approached by some members of King Oyo’s legal team to settle the case amicably. He however said that he will not adhere to their demands, unless they are promises of reforms in the kingdom.
Kusemererwa says that he doesn’t want a repeat of 2011, when members of the clan council sued King Oyo, but later withdrew the case out of court after the King promised to adhere to their demands like proper management of kingdom resources and interference in kingdom administration by palace officials, but have never been addressed.