The Criminal Investigations Directorate of Police has summoned lawyer Isaac Ssemakadde to record a statement on allegations of attacking Justice Ssekaana Musa.
Ssemakadde has been summoned by Assistant Commissioner of Police Julius Twinomujuni on behalf of the Director CID, to report at the CID headquarters in Kibuli on February 28th, 2022.
He will be interviewed and also asked to record a statement for offensive communication.
“You are required to report at 10:00am and you will particularly report to the officer in charge of cybercrime D/ASP Henry Kayiza on telephone number……who will guide you on what is required. The summoning letter by Twinomujuni indicates.”
It is not clear on how Ssemakadde, the Executive Director of Legal Brains for Trust, a non for profit organization offended Justice Ssekaana.
However, on February 1st, 2022, Ssemakkade’s conduct was condemned by the Uganda Judicial Officers Association- UJOA through their president Justice Tadeo Asiimwe who accused him of attacking judicial officers together with Male Mabirizi.
“The Uganda Judicial Officers Association-UJOA has learnt of the unbecoming utterances attributed to Isaac Ssemakadde, an Advocate, through his Twitter handle @IsaacSsemakadde directed to some judicial officers. The same arose out of a decision that found Mr Male Mabirizi in contempt of court and recommended sanctions as against him for such conduct,” wrote Asiimwe.
He added that, “Male made similar insults via his twitter handle @MalemabiriziHKK on various dates. The Uganda Judicial Officers Association condemns these statements”.
According to Asiimwe, the statements came from a lawyer who is aware of a well-established mechanism for addressing dissatisfaction with the court decisions without attacking judicial officers on social media.
“We urge the Uganda Law Society and the Law council to take necessary action to tame this irreverent behavior which severely impacts on judicial officers in the performance of their duties,” added Asiimwe.
Following that, the Personal Assistant to Ssemakadde, Isabella Nakiyonga responded to Asiimwe in a letter dated February 7th, 2022 saying that they are shocked, dismayed and embarrassed by the non-judicial posture taken to condemn Ssemakadde without a fair hearing.
“This is to request the proceedings, minutes and/or resolutions of the general meeting, executive committee or other organ of the Uganda Judicial Officers Association which deduced that Ssemakadde had to be condemned in the terms of the impugned letter which you signed and distributed widely in the mass media,” wrote Nakiyonga.
On the same day, Nakiyonga wrote to the Chief Registrar of the Judiciary seeking for the minutes of the 23rd Annual Judges Conference to find out if it was true that he had been condemned without a fair hearing.
“Be that as it may, Ssemakadde would like to understand the concerns and motivations of the said Judges better. This is therefore to request for a report of the proceedings, minutes and or resolutions of the 23rd Annual Judges Conference, excerpts of which were widely publicized in the mass media, “reads Nakiyonga’s letter.
It added that, “given the seriousness of the matter, kindly let us have the said report not later than February 11th 2022.”
However, Nakiyonga did not get any feedback and by the time Ssemakadde was summoned on Monday to report to police, she had written another letter to UJOA reminding them to give her the report not later than February 25th 2022.
When we contacted Ssemakadde over the summons, he said that he is neither scared nor will he be deterred. “Justice Ssekaana will soon get his comeuppance. Others will then learn from him to maintain judicial decorum and respect the sovereignty of that citizen in a constitutional democracy. Watch this space,” said Ssemakadde.
He added that, “the judge, and his accomplices who want to bury a big judicial scandal that Male Mabirizi and I are about to expose, know that they cannot win in a civil case taken out against me, so they are hiding behind criminal summons which are unconstitutional and illegal. But I am not scared and I won’t be deterred.
According to Ssemakadde, Justice Ssekaana who joined the Judiciary in 2018 from private practice is a freshman Judge with a lot of “kajanja”. “His older colleagues should warn him to go slowly against paragons of the rule of law,” said Ssemakadde.
The summons issued to Ssemakadde have come at the time when lawyer Mabirizi was arrested from Kyambogo University gate to be taken to Kitalya prison to serve 18 months in jail as ordered by Ssekaana for attacking judicial officers.
About two weeks ago, while at the opening of the New Law Year 2022, Owiny-Dollo indicated that they had a 23rd Annual judges conference, and among the issues they resolved was not to take lightly cases of advocates and litigants who attack judicial officers in the course of executing their duties.
The chief justice wondered why a judge would make a decision and some people start criticizing his genitals, saying when you undress judges and they remain naked, they are most likely to run into hiding and when the devil goes on rampage, one might need somewhere to find salvage.
According to Owiny-Dollo, the judiciary is like a forest where one can hide and therefore it should never be attacked. On the same day, the head of the bar (attorney general) Kiryowa Kiwanuka in his maiden speech also warned lawyers to desist from behaviors of attacking judicial officers and called upon the Law Council to whip such errant members of the bar. URN