Ugandan Traders Stand with Ham, Condemning Conflict of Interest, Deliberate Ignoring, and Disregard for Illegalities in DTB Saga
This press conference concerns the conflict of interest and intentional disregard by the court towards evident illegalities in the case of Ham, contrary to previous court decisions. It is important to acknowledge that in Ugandan legal jurisprudence, once an illegality is brought to the attention of the court, it cannot be overlooked, and courts have promptly addressed such matters.
However, the case of Ham against DTB presents a different scenario. Despite DTB Kenya’s acknowledgment and the existence of records and a judgment confirming their illegal operation in Uganda, this issue has been disregarded. DTB appealed to the court of appeal, yet all grounds of appeal, including the matter of illegality, were deliberately ignored. Instead, the court referred the case back to the high court for a retrial. Subsequently, Ham appealed to the Supreme Court, where DTB’s lawyers admitted the issue of illegality but attempted to influence the Supreme Court justices by suggesting that ruling in favor of Ham would adversely impact the economy and the banking sector.
This position not only seeks to influence the Supreme Court’s decision but also raises concerns of conflict of interest and hypocrisy. It should be noted that DTB is represented by K&K advocates, while the Attorney General, Mr. Kiryowa Kiwanuka, who should prioritize the interests of Ugandans, is defending DTB in an illegal operation. On the contrary, numerous Ugandans and Ugandan businesses have faced closures, arrests, prosecution, and imprisonment for operating without licenses. The Attorney General’s defense of DTB, which operated in Uganda without a license in violation of the financial institutions Act (2004), reflects hypocrisy, conflict of interest, and a deliberate mockery of Ugandan courts and laws.
Ham’s case not only exposes the double standards in our country but also highlights the struggles of the common man. In Kampala, for instance, street vendors without licenses have been arrested in large numbers, presented before courts, and ultimately imprisoned at Luzira. These individuals are breadwinners striving to support their families. However, the Attorney General, who finds fault in Ugandan citizens operating as vendors without licenses to make a living, fails to condemn DTB for its illegal operations but instead provides them protection.
The judiciary has always demonstrated its independence, and now it is crucial for it to firmly and resolutely address illegalities. An illegality remains an illegality, regardless of its disguise. Ugandans are closely observing to determine if justice is only served against the poor individuals struggling to provide for their families, while rich multinational corporations and foreign entities consider Uganda a lawless playground where they can engage in illegal activities without consequence.
We call upon all Ugandans, including those affected by operating without licenses and those dedicated to upholding the rule of law, to closely follow the case of Ham Vs DTB. This case will set another precedent in the banking sector regarding the operation of financial institutions without licenses. Just like any other business or individual, banks are not above the law, and selective application of the law cannot be tolerated. A court ruling against a bank that operates or has operated illegally would not only serve as a strong warning to any other institution contemplating similar actions in the future but also demonstrate that Ugandan courts do not selectively apply the law and that justice is not mocked in Uganda.
As the Hustlers Movement of Uganda, we have faith in the Ugandan judiciary and firmly believe that the Supreme Court justices will uphold the rule of law and apply it impartially, thereby refusing to condone further illegalities by banks. The case of Ham will establish a clear precedent.
For God And My Country.
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