By Sania Babirye
Kampala Lord Mayor Elias Lukwago has petitioned the High court seeking orders to overturn the Electoral commission decision to suspend campaign meetings in 11 districts including Kampala district on grounds of increasing numbers of COVID-19 infections .
Through his law firm of Lukwago and company advocates, Lukwago claims that the EC’s decision contained in a press statement of 26th of December is irrational and an infringement on his rights to associate, interface and convince the electorate to vote him for the 3rd time in the office of the Lord mayor .
He further claims that as a candidate and the political head of the city, EC did not give him a fair hearing before issuing the said ban depriving him of his right to disseminate their ideas to citizens , which is a fundamental component of a free and fair election.
Lukwago says the advise given by the EC that candidates should campaign through media outlets (radios and Tvs) in the contentious districts is not tenable since government has not taken any measures to ensure that Radio or Television sets are distributed among citizens despite a huge budget to purchase them being allocated by parliament during the last quarter .
Lukwago now wants the High court to quash EC’s decision and issue an injunctive order stopping the Inspector General of police who was directed to ensure that no campaign meeting occurs in Kampala , Masaka, Luweero, Mbarara , Kasese, Wakiso , Jinja , Kalungu , Kazo and Tororo from implementing the same.
He also wants court to order EC to pay him general damages for the inconvenience as his campaign schedules have been disrupted by this decision.
Lukwago has in a related development filed an accompanying application asking court to treat his case as an urgent matter given that the polling date is drawing near.