The Minister of defense and veterans affairs Vincent Bamulangaki Ssempijja dragged Kalungu West MP Francis Katabaazi Katongole to court for failure to pay him costs on allegations that he won the vote recount.
Through his lawyers M/s Ntegyerreize, Ingura & Musiimenta Advocates, Mr Ssempijja filed a bill of costs of Shs 94,302,500 demanding that he is paid that money so that he also pays his lawyers who were defending him in the matter.
In January 2021, Minister Ssempijja ran to court challenging the victory of NUP’s Katabaazi and sought a vote recount which court presided over by his worship Charles Yeteise granted.
Ssempijja alleged that his polling agents were dismissed from 36 polling stations, which gave the chance to his political rival to rig the election.
After the court declared a recount, it was realised that a ballot box at St Jude Primary School polling station was tampered with and the court declared Katabaazi the winner.
Meanwhile, a court sitting which will be presided over by Chief Magistrate Sylvia Nvanungi has set Wednesday for the commencement of the hearing of the matter in which Mr Ssempijja is demanding costs.
Mr Katabaazi through his lawyers Mbabali Jude & Company Advocates has given an ultimatum of two days to Mr Ssempijja to withdraw the case, threatening that he would open up a case against him [Ssempijja] also demanding for costs.
“It is me who would be demanding my costs since I won the recount, but I did not ask for any costs because I had wasted a lot of time in court and decided to leave him, if he insists, I will demand over Shs200m from him,” Mr Katabaazi said.
Mr Jude Mbabaali in the letter addressed to Mr Ssempijja said that the actions towards his client were fraudulent and amounted to abuse of court process.
“This conduct does not befit a person at the level of a Cabinet Minister and we ask you to give us a written apology and failure to do so, we have instructions to file a suit against you for abusing the judicial process to the irritation and annoyance of our client,” Mr Mbabaali said in his letter.
Katabaazi garnered 12,198 votes against Ssempijja who got 10,865 votes.