By Spy Uganda
The High Court in Kampala has on July 14 finally delivered a ruling in a case filed by Team University that has been working day and night to stop the National Council of Higher Education (NCHE) from investigating its degree awarded to Kenyan Senator Johnson Sakaja.
For starters, Team University run to court this year to stop NCHE’s investigation saying that the Council does not have the mandate to investigate the University on issues pertaining to academic credentials but can only regulate.
Through its lawyers of Mwesigwa Rukutana Advocates, the university argued that NCHE has no mandate to investigate an award by a licensed institution, and its move to investigate a degree awarded to its former students is illegal.
In its application, the University wanted Court to issue:
1. An interim order doth issue restraining the respondent, its employees, subordinates, agents or any other person from investigating/inquiring into the qualification awarded to one Sakaja Johnson Arthur by Team University and/or relying on, for the decision any report arising from such an inquiry/investigation pending the determination of the high court miscellaneous application No.0324 of 2022.
2. An interim order doth issue restraining the respondent, its employees, subordinates, agents, or any other person from publicizing the inquiry/investigation in any mainstream or any other media and/or relying on the report or relying same for any decision pending the determination of miscellaneous application No.0324 of 2022.
3. That costs of the application be provided for.
Out of Team University’s outcry, the High Court last month temporarily halted the NCHE investigation and issued the interim order partially stating thus;
“An interim order is issued restraining the respondent (NCHE), its employees, subordinates, agents or any other person from investigating into the qualification awarded to Johnson Sakaja by Team University.”
The order that was issued by court Deputy Registrar Jamson Karemani also barred NCHE from relying on the said investigation for a decision until the determination of another application which is slated for July 14.
Now the story begins; In a ruling for the above-mentioned application No.0324 of 2022, civil suit No.185 at High Court (Civil Division) again issued by Karemani, Court found no merit in University’s application thus trashing it.
In his submission, the counsel for the applicant stated that the respondent has been threatening to carry out an investigation something Court trashed based on the submission of the respondent’s counsel Fiona Kunihira that the investigation was stopped by the Inspector General of Government (IGG).
“According to the affidavit in support of the application and the submissions of the learned counsel for the applicant the application was based on the request for information sent to the applicant dated 14th June 2022 to conclude that there was an investigation going on in the matter,” states the ruling, “I do believe that the respondent’s submissions that indeed the investigations were stopped and at moment there is no investigation being carried out by the respondent. The status quo is that there is no investigation being carried out by the respondent.”
Court ruled that based on the submission of the two parties that there is no imminent threat to carry out the investigations anymore.
“I have looked at the averments in the affidavits and the submission of both counsel and it is my finding that there is no imminent threat to carry out the investigations anymore,” Court ruled,” All in all, I find no merit in this application which I dismiss.”
On costs, Court ruled thus; “At the time of filing this application the developments about the halting of the investigations by the IGG had not been communicated to the applicant and for that reason, I absolve the applicant of the costs. Each party to bear its own costs.”