Lawyer Male Mabirizi has taken legal action against the recent decision by the police to ban the mobilization tours organized by the National Unity Platform (NUP) party and its leader, Robert Kyagulanyi, commonly known as Bobi Wine.
Mabirizi has filed a lawsuit in the Mbale High Court, arguing that the ban, as stated in a police announcement signed by the Deputy Inspector General of Police, Maj Gen Geoffrey Katsigazi Tumusiime, is illegal. He is requesting the court to issue an order overturning this decision.
In his case, Mabirizi has stated, “The above directives were illegal, procedurally improper, irrational and are outside the functions of Uganda Police Force.”
The Deputy Police Chief, in a statement dated September 13, expressed concern that Kyagulanyi and his NUP supporters had not adhered to several guidelines provided by the police. He remarked, “While we fully support the right of individuals, groups, and other citizens to peacefully gather and express their views on public policy matters, we have observed that there have been significant breaches of the guidelines in all areas where NUP mobilization activities have taken place.”
Maj Gen Katsigazi also noted that during one of the rallies, Kyagulanyi had “incited violence, promoted sectarianism, made illegitimate calls for the removal of an elected government, and issued defamatory statements against President Museveni.”
“In light of these clear violations of the guidelines, the NUP’s activities are immediately suspended. This announcement follows our earlier communication to the NUP leadership, suspending their planned mobilization activities and office openings until they are prepared to comply with the guidelines and the rule of law.”
Mabirizi’s case before the High Court argues that all actions taken by the police to halt the NUP mobilization tour were illegal and procedurally improper, warranting court intervention.
He has requested the court to issue an order of prohibition and a permanent injunction to prevent the Inspector General of Police or subordinates from further interference with citizens’ political and civic activities.
Mabirizi asserts that he is filing the case as someone with a vested interest in the good governance of Uganda, the rule of law, and a free political space in Uganda, and he believes it is fair and just for his application to be accepted.
Furthermore, Mabirizi is seeking damages for the inconveniences caused.