Kabaka Mutebi

High Court in Kampala has held that a subject of the king of Buganda Ronald Mutebi who sued him who is challenging the compulsory registration of people living on the king’s land is not a qualified advocate.

On Tuesday, the deputy registrar of the High court civil division Alex Ajiji in a brief ruling said that Mr Male Mabiriizi Kiwanuka is not allowed to sit at the bar while the being heard in court adding that it is a practice that only advocates can sit at the bar while a case is being heard.

“Anyone who is not a member of the bar talks only from the dock. The applicant should know his place in court” Ajiji ruled according to the Observer.

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Mr Mabairizi, a surveyor, claims the petition is riddled with falsehoods calculated to mislead court.

“Courts must reflect the will of the people. Your Worship, you are cowardising (sic) on this matter,” a furious Male said. However, the registrar remained cool, reminding him that he was following the law and practice in the court system.

Mr Mabirizi contends that the Kabaka’s land where subjects are living was returned to the king by the central government and is public land collectively owned by the people of Buganda. Mr Kiwanuka says the Kabaka is only holding the land in trust for his subjects but is not their landlord or master.

He is challenging the Kabaka’s action, requiring all his subjects living on the kingdom land to register their plots at a fee ranging between Shs100,000 and Shs600,000 depending on the location. Registration of land in Kampala, Wakiso or the surrounding areas is Shs600,000 while in the rural areas, the owners pay Shs100,000.

The petitioner is seeking court declarations that Kabaka Mutebi’s actions through the Buganda Land Board to impose compulsory registration fees and threats to evict people who will not register their land in the king’s name are illegal.

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