Sheema County MP arrested over unpaid legal costs

Sheema County MP Yorokamu Bategana Katwiremu was yesterday arrested and arraigned before Mbarara High Court over failure to pay legal costs incurred by his political rival in a 2010 election petition.
Court bailiffs, armed with an arrest warrant, picked the legislator in the morning from Kampala and took him to court in Mbarara for recovery of Shs138, 760,000 as costs incurred by Prof Ephraim Kamuntu.

He appeared before court where he made a commitment of paying the money in monthly installments until full payment before he was released.

The arrest of the MP follows an election petition in which court nullified the National Resistance Movement (NRM) party primary elections that Eng Bategana had won.

Following his defeat in the 2010 NRM primary elections, Prof Kamuntu, the Minister of Water and Environment, through his lawyers successfully challenged the election results leading to award of the legal costs. Court nullified NRM primary election results and ordered Mr Katwiremu to pay legal costs incurred by the petitioner.

The arrest warrant followed an application by the lawyers for court to order for arrest and detention of Mr Katwiremu, who is described as judgement debtor until full payment. When contacted, both Mr Katwiremu and Prof Kamuntu confirmed the development in separate interviews.

SOURCE: Daily Monitor

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