Amos Mandela is the rightfully elected Member of Parliament for Buyamba County, Rakai District, according to the court of appeal.
Court of Appeal Registrar Tadeo Asiimwe this morning read the judgment on behalf of the Justices; former Deputy Chief Justice Steven Kavuma, Justice Elizabeth Musoke and Justice Cheborion Barashaki, where they quashed a High Court verdict by Justice Lawrence Gidudu nullifying Mandela's 2016 victory for lack of academic qualifications.
The initial decision was based on an appeal filed by Mandela's political rival Ivan Bwowe accusing Mandela of election fraud and forgery. Bwowe argued that Mandela's nomination to contest for a parliamentary seat was erroneous.
Bwowe questioned the O'level certificate obtained from Nakyenyi Secondary School in 1988 and told the High Court that the document, which was eventually used by the legislator for admission to other institutions, is in the names of Amos Nandela and not Amos Mandela.
Bwowe added that certificates in the names of Amos Nandela were used to obtain a Diploma in Development Studies from Nsamizi Institute of Social Development and a Degree in Adult Education from Makerere University. He added that Mandela had submitted to the Electoral Commission, affidavits from statutory declarations instead of academic qualifications.
The Uganda National Examinations Board - UNEB also told the court that the candidate on record is Amos Nandela and not Mandela.
Although Mandela told Masaka High Court that the mistake on his name was just a typing error made by UNEB on his O-Level certificate, the judge ruled that 28 years after he sat for the exam should have given him enough time to rectify the mistake. The Court also rendered void his subsequent academic awards. Justice Gidudu the inconsistency as strange.
But Mandela appealed against the decision. This morning, the Court of Appeal reversed Gidudu's ruling on ground that Mandela has furnished court with documents from Uganda National Examination Board showing that the mistake in the name had been corrected.
The three judges also ruled that no proof has been provided showing existence of another person in the name of Nandela Amos who owns the certificate that Amos Mandela had presented. The judges added that Mandela was validly elected to represent the constituency in parliament.
The court has ordered Bwowe Ivan to pay the costs of the petition.