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We Are Not Rebelling Against Our Bosses – UJOA Defend Themselves On Suing PS Bigirimana, AG Advises Him To Reinstate Allowances For Judicial Officers…

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The chambers of the Attorney General, a chief government legal adviser has advised the Permanent Secretary to judiciary Pius Bigirimana to reinstate all the consolidated judicial allowances which he revoked when he took over office from his interdicted predecessor Kagole Kivumbi.

The Attorney General’s advice was delivered on 22rd of November this year by Esther Nambayo, the chief registrar in a meeting with executive members of the Uganda Judicial Officers Association (UJOA) at the High Court criminal Division building in Kampala.  Bigirimana removed the consolidated judicial allowances from the judicial officers claiming that they were receiving them in error which forced them to protest against the move and file a Civil suit against him in the high court civil division.

Nambayo told UJOA officers that the prime minister Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda also directed the Attorney General to look into Bigirimana’s claim that there were errors committed when computing the 30% consolidation allowances to judicial officers which he was trying to rectify.

“The clarification on this matter would come from the Attorney General,” the minutes from the meeting read in part. On the issue of the selective payments to some judicial officers, Nambayo said that it’s not only affecting the lower bench but the problem cuts across because the Chief Justice Bart Magunda Katurebe also complained about it. She said that Chief Justice complained that he received housing allowance on his pay slip yet he stays in a government house and the money doesn’t even get to his bank account.

He advised lower judicial officers that when they experience such issues, they should always follow up with the human resource department. According to the minutes exclusively seen by theGrapevine, Geoffrey Kaweesa, the UJOA president told Nambayo that their association is not trying to rebel against the judiciary top management.

“UJOA is a channel that addresses judicial officers’ grievances as outlined in its objectives while advocating for an improvement in judicial officers’ welfare, terms of service and work environment. UJOA and the judiciary have the same goals,” Kaweesa noted. Kawesa asked Nambayo to establish a human resource manual that will guide top management while transferring judicial officers to avoid their executive members being transferred to upcountry areas. He also tasked Nambayo to explain to the judicial officers the difference between her office and that of the Permanent Secretary to the judiciary and where to take their complaints. He further wondered why some judicial officers are not referred to the Judicial Service Commission but are sent to the internal disciplinary committee.

Kaweesa also asked the Chief Registrar to apply for free sim cards for judicial officers as it was done at the Directorate of Public Prosecution (DPP) where all staff were given Africell sim card lines for easy internal communication. He said that such an initiative will limit complaints of lower judicial officers using pseudo names to insult their superiors on main judicial social media platforms. It should be noted that UJOA members recently complained against removing them from the main judicial social media platform before the Chief Justice.

By Jamil Lutakome

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MY MONEY

KCCA Cabinet Suspends Trade Licenses, Market Dues And Commercial User Fees For 6 Months…

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Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) cabinet has resolved to suspend trade licenses, market dues and commercial uer fees up-to 31st December 2020.

The Lord Mayor Erias Lukwago said that they arrived at the decision after a thorough assessment of the COVID-19 pandemic and its related effects and resolved that it is no longer viable to meet the KCCA Budgetary projections.

The total KCCA Budget is UGX521Billion and out of that, approximately UGX100Billion is expected to be generated from Local Revenue.

Lukwago said that because many city businesses are struggling, it may not be proper for KCCA to impose taxes during a time when many businesses are struggling.

Among the resolutions passed by the cabinet include:

  1. Trade Licenses be suspended up-to 31st December 2020 and this grace period will enable the business community to get back to business.
  2. Market dues be suspended up-to 31st December 2020. The Executive noted that majority of the urban poor ply their goods in the markets and they have equally suffered the consequences of COVID-19.
  3. Commercial User fees be suspended up-to 31st December 2020. There was a proposal by the Minister to re-introduce commercial user fees for the taxis and boda-bodas in the City. The KCCA Executive body resolved that it would be ridiculous to levy fees from these bodies which have been out of business since March 2020.

Lukwago said that the Cabinet Resolutions are going to be submitted in the Council by the Minister of Finance because the City Executive is duty bound to initiate policies and forward the same for the Council’s ratification in line with the law.

 

By Sandra Mukisa




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NEWS

Trump Turns Racial War Into A Social Media Battle After Warning To Shoot George Floyd Protesters….

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As the US state of Minneapolis burns during a third night of protests in the wake of the death of George Floyd, US President Donald Trump has threatened to call in the National Guard after labeling the protesters “thugs” and blaming the Mayor Jacob Frey of losing control over the city.

Trump has now turned what was a racial war into a social media war after the social media giant added a fact-check label to a pair of his tweets after blaming him for promoting violence.

Twitter said Friday that President Donald Trump violated its rules against glorifying violence when he tweeted about protests over the death of George Floyd. The company, which is already embroiled in a dispute with the president over what is acceptable on the platform, did not remove the tweet but placed a fact check label on it.

In the tweet, Trump warned protesters that he is going to send the military to calm the storm in Minneapolis and shoot rioters who have started looting.

“These THUGS are dishonoring the memory of George Floyd, and I won’t let that happen. Just spoke to Governor Tim Walz and told him that the Military is with him all the way. Any difficulty and we will assume control but, when the looting starts, the shooting starts. Thank you!,” the American President tweeted.

This tweet did not go well with twitter, they added a fact-check label to a pair of his tweets warning that he had violated twitter rules against glorifying violence.

“This Tweet violated the Twitter Rules about glorifying violence. However, Twitter has determined that it may be in the public’s interest for the Tweet to remain accessible,” a message from twitter attached to Trump’s message said.

A defiant Trump added, “I can’t stand back & watch this happen to a great American City, Minneapolis. A total lack of leadership. Either the very weak Radical Left Mayor, Jacob Frey, get his act together and bring the City under control, or I will send in the National Guard & get the job done right.”

He later turned guns on twitter bosses, “Twitter is doing nothing about all of the lies & propaganda being put out by China or the Radical Left Democrat Party. They have targeted Republicans, Conservatives & the President of the United States. Section 230 should be revoked by Congress. Until then, it will be regulated!”

He tweeted, ““The President has been targeted by Twitter.” What about all of the lies and fraudulent statements made by Adam Schiff, and so many others, on the Russian Witch Hunt Plus, Plus, Plus? What about China’s propaganda? WHO’s mistakes? No flags?”

“Regulate Twitter if they are going to start regulating free speech.” Well, as they have just proven conclusively, that’s what they are doing. Repeal Section 230!!!” he said.

George Floyd who was killed by Mineapolis police officers

THE INCIDENT

George Floyd, an African American man who’d already suffered the loss of his job to the coronavirus crisis, died in police custody in Minneapolis this week. Video of the incident showed he was handcuffed and restrained by an officer who dug his knee into his neck for several minutes, while Floyd pleaded, saying he couldn’t breathe.

Floyd died at the hospital late on Monday after a white police officer, knelt on the 46-year-old’s neck for several minutes as Floyd moaned and yelled: “I can’t breathe.”

A video of the incident shows Floyd pleading with police and eventually appearing motionless as the officer’s knee remained on his neck. Bystanders can be heard urging the officer to get off of Floyd.

In a news conference on Wednesday, Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey joined calls for the officer who pinned Floyd down to be arrested, asking: “Why is the man who killed George Floyd not in jail?”

Protesters in Minneapolis

Medaria Arradondo, the city’s first Black police chief, swiftly fired the four officers involved, a move community leader acknowledged as “a win”, but said should only be the first step.

The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) and the FBI are both investigating the incident.

The Minneapolis Police Department said on Tuesday Floyd “physically resisted officers”.

However, another Security camera footage, obtained by CBS News, shows Floyd sitting on the ground with his hands behind his back and then walking with police out of frame.

It is unclear what happens between the time Floyd and police walk out of the frame and the time when a bystander’s video shows an officer pinning Floyd down to the ground with his knee.

WHAT DOES TWITTER SAY ABOUT VIOLENT THREATS?

According to twitter, Violence against an individual or a group of people or the glorification of violence is prohibited.

“Healthy conversation is only possible when people feel safe from abuse and don’t resort to using violent language. For this reason, we have a policy against threatening violence on Twitter. We define violent threats as statements of an intent to kill or inflict serious physical harm on a specific person or group of people,” they state.

They add, “We will immediately and permanently suspend any account found to be posting violent threats. In rare cases, we may not suspend an account immediately. For example, if the reported content is a form of hyperbolic speech. In such cases, we may require you to remove this content. We may also temporarily lock you out of your account before you can Tweet again. If you continue to violate this policy after receiving a warning, your account will be permanently suspended.”

However, even though Trump’s tweet violated the rules, his tweet fell in the category of public interest.

“Twitter generally actions Tweets that violate our rules. However, we recognize that sometimes it may be in the public interest to allow people to view Tweets that would otherwise be taken down. We consider content to be in the public interest if it directly contributes to understanding or discussion of a matter of public concern,” their policy statement states.

It adds, “At present, we limit exceptions to one critical type of public-interest content—Tweets from elected and government officials—given the significant public interest in knowing and being able to discuss their actions and statements.”

 

By Grapevine Reporters



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CRIME

Police Investigating Mbale High Court Judge For Knocking Dead Traffic Officer In Seeta….

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Innocent Ayesigye (inset) and the Toyota Rav4 car that knocked him dead

Multiple Credible sources at the Uganda police department of criminal investigation have told this website that Mbale Resident Judge Jesse Byaruhanga is being investigated for knocking dead Innocent Ayesigye, a police traffic officer at Seeta Mukono and taking off.

Yesterday, Kampala Metropolitan Police spokesperson Patrick Onyango told the Grapevine that they have arrested a one Police constable Alex Oduku and Aminsi Zimba to help in the investigation.

However, sources have told this website that Oduku is the bodyguard to Mbale resident Judge Byaruhanga and that he was in the vehicle registration number UAS 597U Toyota Rav4 and he was seen on the CCTV cameras and footage captured by an eye witness on the day of the accident.

Source further revealed that when police arrested Zimba, who is a personal driver to Byaruhanga, he told investigators that he was not the one who was driving the said car.

Byaruhanga has not yet been arrested but sources have intimated to us that he was seen at the police headquarters in Naguru on Wednesday and he talked some top police administrator to see how they can settle the matter without facing legal actions.

Detectives who are handling the matter said that UAS 597U is registered in the names of Charity Kamugisha, a staff of world vision Uganda.

Innocent Ayesigye a traffic police officer attached to Seeta Police station was on Sunday evening knocked down by a Toyota RaV4 registration number UAS 597U. The police officer was riding a motorcycle at Namanve along the Kampala-Jinja highway.

Efforts to speak to Byaruhanga were futile since his known phone numbers were off.

 

By Sengooba Alirabaki




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