The High Court sitting in Soroti District has dismissed with costs the election petition filed by Forum for Democratic Change Party Moses Atan Okia, in which he challenged the election of Soroti City East MP Herbert Edmund Ariko, NRM, over alleged election malpractices.
While delivering a judgement on Friday, January 20th, Justice Musa Sekaana declared that the July 28th, 2022 by-election in which NRM Ariko emerged the winner was in accordance with the law.
According to Justice Sekaana, FDC Atan and his legal team failed to provide enough evidence to prove beyond a reasonable doubt the allegation of malpractices during the electoral processes.
“The petition filed against Ariko failed and therefore was dismissed with costs,” said Justice Sekaana.
NRM Ariko polled some 9407 votes against 8771 by Atan, according to the area registrar, Christine Eyuu, a move that did not satisfy FDC Atan, who later filed a petition challenging his defeat.
In August 2022, Atan, through his lawyers, JByamukama and Co. Advocates challenged the result, claiming malpractices, the detention of his agents, and the involvement of the military during electoral processes.
The by-election came as a result of the court of appeals ruling in May, which overturned the victory of Okia over the mistaken appropriation of Aloet and Opiya wards to Sorot City West division.