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Observer reporters win case against Parliament

Sulaiman Kakaire (L) and David Lumu

Observer reporters, Sulaiman Kakaire and David Tash Lumu (now with New Vision) have today won a judicial review case against parliament following their suspension from covering the house in 2013 over what the Speaker deemed as ‘inaccurate articles’.

The duo were suspended from covering parliament by a January 28 2013 letter for the articles; “How Kadaga, Oulanyah fought over petition" and “House recall petitioners strike deal with Kadaga”.

According to the letter, the articles were deemed inaccurate and damaging to the offices and persons of the Speaker Rebecca Kadaga and her deputy, Jacoub Oulanyah.

The suspension was challenged on the grounds of illegality, irrationality and procedure impropriety.

But in a precedent ruling today, Justice Yasin Nyanzi ruled that; “Speaker through the clerk acted illegally without the input of the disciplinary committee”, the Press and Journalism Act Cap provides procedure for any aggrieved person and supercedes guidelines form media coverage of Parliament and the Speaker.

Also, that there is no offence under the law for publishing false news and it is a limitation to media freedom.

In addition, the clerk and Speaker did not give any rationale for their decision or decision under any law/custody hence making the decision null and void.

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