A Ugandan national has sued Kenya at the East African Court of Justice in Arusha, Tanzania, over recent utterances by ODM lawmakers targeting the country’s ruling party National Resistance Movement (NRM).
The ODM Members of Parliament recently slammed Kenya’s Deputy President William Ruto over links with President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda following an aborted trip to the East African country.
Led by National Assembly Minority leader John Mbadi and Minority chief whip Junet Mohamed, the legislators questioned Ruto’s frequent trips to Uganda and ties with NRM which they claimed had a wanting reputation in upholding human rights.
In the complaint filed in court on Friday, Paul Bamutaze argues that the utterances by the politicians were demeaning to both the ruling party and the Head of State.
The businessman with ties to the NRM party wants a section of ODM MPs fined for undermining Uganda’s ruling party and by extension the East African Community.
MPs named in the suit include Junet (Suna East), Mbadi (Suba), Opiyo Wandayi (Ugunja), Caleb Hamisi (Saboti), Jared Okello (Nyando), Fatuma Abdi (Wajir), Millie Odhiambo (Suba North) and Anthony Otieno.
“Awards an interest of 6% per annum on costs awarded to the applicants from the time of filing this reference till payment in full,” the court papers read in part concerning the fine.
Kenya’s Attorney General Paul Kihara Kariuki has been given 45 days to respond to the matter.
“You are hereby notified that the above-mentioned applicant has instituted a reference against you, a copy of which is annexed hereto. You are hereby required to file a response within 45 days from the day of service hereof, the reference will be heard and determined in your absence,” court documents read in part.
In a press statement, Junet and his colleagues had demanded that the DP comes clean on his relationship with Museveni.
“While we don’t wish to interfere with the internal political arrangements in other Countries, we want to state categorically that we don’t need to borrow from other Countries political habits whose end results can only lead to chaos and backwardness for our Country,” said Junet.
Pointing out NRM’s record on human rights, democracy, good governance, freedom of the press, fighting corruption among others not worth emulating, the Suna East MP claimed Dr Ruto was seeking ways to destabilise the country should he lose the elections.
The DP was blocked from leaving the country for Uganda on Monday because he allegedly lacked clearance from State House.
His allies have claimed the orders to frustrate the DP came from Cabinet Secretary for Interior Fred Matiang’i.