Court orders Soroti University to pay interdicted Secretary shs.110 million

Ruth Acimo and NRM mobilizer Teddy Acham after Court verdict on Monday

SOROTI- The Interdicted Soroti University Secretary Ruth Acimo has won a Court case.

Acimo had dragged her employer, Soroti University together with Inspector General of Government for illegally interdicting her from her office.

In his Monday ruling, Soroti High Court Judge Justice David Batema, quashed the interdiction of Mrs. Acimo, ruling that the office of the IGG had no jurisdiction to interdict a staff who has not been tried in Court or whose case has been reported to police.

According to Justice Batema, the IGG rightly directed the responsible officer to exercise the power to interdict Acimo.

The Judge, however ruled that the IGG should not have ordered responsible officers to follow unlawful procedure, averring that the Court couldn’t uphold such a decision.

He added that the IGG did not hold legal sense to defend or accept the wrongs of the University Council.

The Judge further stated that it was also unfair for the University Council headed by Francis Xavier Lubanga to take orders from the IGG yet the Governing Council together with IGG did not give a fair hearing to the petitioner.

Batema further stated that the Soroti University Governing Council wrongly interpreted the directive and orders of the IGG to fabricate their duties and made a one man’s decision as no Council resolution was made for the interdiction of the University Secretary.

Notwithstanding the facts that Counsel Pauline Nansamba, Senior Inspectorate Officer at IGG had urged during her submission that the IGG had given Ms. Acimo time to respond to the queries raised on her, Justice Batema made it clear that, the IGG on 12 January 2018 only requested  Acimo to avail them  with information of recruitment of some staff and accountability vouchers, inquiries on receipts but did not denote that the petitioner was on investigations and that her reply did not mean she was making a defense on issues raised on her interdiction letter.

He however ruled that, “the order by the IGG to interdict the University Secretary was null and void. IGG do not have the jurisdiction to interdict the staff who is not being tried in any Courts of law or being investigated by police.”

He ordered Soroti University to pay a total of Uganda shs.110 million to petitioner as damages against her.

Justice Batema said Acimo was also defamed by information both IGG and Soroti University provided to various media houses in the sub region.

Unsatisfied with the ruling, Counsel Pauline Nansamba, Senior Inspectorate Officer at IGG vowed to appeal against the ruling.

University lawyers headed by Counsel David Okalebo said they are still waiting for the statement from their client whether to appeal or concede defeat and pay the cost.

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