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Uganda: Ex-MP Kantinti jailed over failure to pay Shs108m poll petition cost

Former Kyandondo East Member of Parliament, Apollo Kantinti, has been committed to Luzira Prison for six months over failure to pay Shs108m costs to his opponent Mr Sitenda Sebalu in the 2016 parliamentary elections.

The High Court in July 2016 nullified Kantinti’s election as the Kyadondo East MP on grounds that there was non-compliance by the Electoral Commission with election rules during the elections in that constituency, a decision he appealed against.

The ruling followed a successful petition by NRM’s Sebalu who had been beaten in election by Kantinti by a small margin of 326 votes.

Mr Sebalu had in his petition sued Kantinti and the electoral body for conniving to commit several election irregularities which he said affected the quality of election in Kyandondo East, hence the nullification by court which ordered for fresh elections before ordering Mr Kantinti to also pay Shs108m as costs incurred by Mr Sebalu in the case.

However, both Kantinti and Sebalu lost the seat to Robert Kyagulanyi alias Bobi Wine during the by-election in June 2017.

Mr Kantinti, who subscribes to the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) said he is willing to serve the six months sentence since he does not have the Shs108m to pay to Mr Sebalu.

“They have committed me to Luzira prison for failure to pay Shs108 million to Sebalu over the election petitions, and am ready to go to prison and serve the 6 months sentence. Am not ready to pay that money to Mr Sebalu,” he said.

Last week, Mr Kantinti was sentenced to another six months over failure to pay a Shs300m bank loan from Standard Chartered he acquired in June 2016 and was to pay it back in 50 instalments for a period of three years with a 25% interest.

Mr Kantinti, however, reportedly started defaulting his monthly instalments compelling the bank to run to court. He was arrested on June 27, and arraigned in the High Court where he was sentenced to six months.

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