ARUA. On Friday, the high court of Arua rescheduled election petition against Terego East county member of Parliament, Mr Mario Obiga Kania after he filed five more additional affidavits in support of his defence.
Kania who is also the state minister for Lands together with Electoral Commission were petitioned by Mr Apama Amato Boroa of Alliance for Transformation who contested in the previous election on grounds that Kania was not eligible to be nominated for parliamentary race as identities of his academic papers are questionable in terms of ownership.
After discovering five more additional Affidavits filed by Kania through Ederu & Gama Advocates, Apama Amato Boroa through his lawyer, Jimmy Madira of Madira & Co Advocates argued to have a supplementary affidavit in order to re-battle the five additional affidavits from Kania.
He added that some of the affidavits the first respondent gave were submitted to court out of time.
To that effect, Apama Amato Boroa’s lawyer requested court to allow him to submit more affidavits, a request that court granted up to Monday today.
Meanwhile Kania’s lawyer, Ivan Abiyo from Ederu and Gama advocates stressed that the petitioner should have verified academic papers of his client first before he filed the case against his client.
In reference to responses from the two parties, the presiding judge, justice Boniface Wamala said lockdown as a result of Covid-19 affected movements in the country, a factor that also affected court processes, especially for respondents who could not access documents from distant places.
“It is clear that rule 19 does not apply to the file of supplementary affidavits as the same applies to enlargement of time set by the rule. In the instant case, it is noticed that until 30th of July 2021, the country was under lockdown, occasioned by covid-19 pandemic in which passenger vehicles could not move. With such, it is understandable that if the first respondent was to obtain an additional evidence, it had to be after 30th of July and that to the court's view is not said to be out of reasonable time” Justice Wamala said.
He then permitted time for submission of the more affidavits by latest by Monday today in the interest of serving justice in the case.The case has been rescheduled for Tuesday.
On the same day, Nebbi municipality MP, Suleiman Hassim retained his seat after court dismissed his petition filed by his former contestant, Robert Onega of FDC.
Robert Onega dragged Suleiman Hassim of National Resistance Movement to court on allegation that Suleiman did not have minimum academic qualification to stand as a member of parliament, seeking to overturn the outcome of the January 2021 elections.