A High Court judge has petitioned the Constitutional Court, questioning the powers of the Inspector General of Government (IGG) to investigate her over allegations of non-payment of her support staff’s allowances amounting to Shs69 million.
Justice Elizabeth Kabanda says the decision by Ms Irene Mulyagonja to institute an inquiry into her conduct is humiliating and defeats the independence and self -accounting status of the Judiciary.
According to court documents, Mr Matiya Karantionara and Mr Jimmy Eyou, formerly working as driver and body guard respectively, to Justice Kabanda , in March 2017 petitioned the IGG, accusing the judge of failing to pay their allowances for criminal sessions held in Mpigi and Mubende courts between September 2016 and January 2017.
The money in question is said to have released by the Judiciary and banked on the accounts of the respective chief magistrates who also double as the accounting officers of the two courts.
Mr Karantionara and Mr Eyou, in their complaint to the IGG, also claimed that Justice Kabanda did not pay their leave allowances for the period between August and September 2017.
Consequently, the IGG instituted an inquiry and has summoned Ms Jolly Nkore, the Mpigi court chief magistrate, and Ms Deborah Wanume, the Mubende court chief magistrate to testify against Justice Kabanda .
However, through her lawyers of Muwema and Company Advocates, Justice Kabanda says the IGG does not have powers to institute disciplinary proceedings against a judicial officer, arguing that this is only a preserve of the Judicial Service Commission and the President, who is the appointing authority.
She wants court to quash the said disciplinary proceedings and also issue a permanent injunction against the IGG from over stepping her mandate.
Justice Kabanda first served as a deputy registrar at the criminal division of the High Court before being appointed judge in July 2013.