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Lady Justice Eva Luswata Discusses The Law On Administration Of Estates Of Persons Of Unsound Mind.

In Re Sogolo Difasi Mugabo A person of Unsound Mind MC No.19 of 2019

The Applicant Kyozira Miria Lynn filed the application seeking to be appointed a manager in charge of helping Mr. Songolo Difasi to manage his estate and bank account on grounds that the patient suffering from schizophrenia, a chronic disorder which causes lapse of memory and or insanity and therefore a person of unsound mind who was unable to manage his estate.

The Justice discussed Section 2 of the Administration of Estates of Persons of Unsound Mind Act which provides that the Court may appoint a manager of the estate of a person of unsound mind, on an application of among others, a person in charge of a mental hospital or a relative of any such person of unsound mind. Under section 3, the Court is required to make inquiries into the state of mind of the patient, and if it’s satisfied that that person is of unsound mind and that the Applicant is a suitable person to act, then the appointment can be made.

According to Kyozira (the Applicant), the patient now aged 89 years is her father currently undergoing treatment of schizophrenia, which is a chronic disease and causes him lapse of memory and insanity. In evaluation of the evidence, Court found that the patient had previously ever entrusted Kyozira (the Applicant) the duty of managing the bank account, and her being his daughter, she was the most appropriate person to handle his property. She attached a Power of Attorney dated 8/2/2019, in which the patient empowered her to operate the account, including the act of depositing and withdrawing monies and all other incidentals to the operation of the account. The patient has been ill for ten years, and deteriorated three years ago. He is unable to do chores and he is like a baby. He cannot talk, his eyes are closed all the time and he cannot communicate and his family is unable to tell what he is thinking. That, it is for her and her sisters who devise his daily routine and feed him, bath him and carry out all other aspects for his wellbeing. She stated that she requires operating the account in order to draw money for his upkeep and medication. She is now 42 years old, and has been looking after the patient for a long time and feels capable of continuing to do so. The illness was confirmed by Dr Ssenyonjo Godfrey who believed that the patient’s health condition rendered him not capable of conducting or managing his own affairs and he visits the patient at least once every week.

The Applicant was granted letters to administer the estate of the person of unsound mind.