Rebellious Congolese National Trial kicks off

By Sania Babirye
The high court in Kampala has finally started hearing a case in which a Congolese national is charged with dragging a Ugandan special hire and later robbing him of his taxi valued at 30 million Ugandan shillings.

The suspect Joseph Ngoie Gunta is charged jointly with a Ugandan Agaba Enoth alias Silagi.
These had been on remand since being arrested on the 20th of july 2016, however, despite their case coming up for mention since last year, Ngoie kept on dragging the case by refusing to be tried until court provided a french interpreter only from Congo despite evidence that he spoke and understood English and Kuganda very well since he was businessman residing in uganda.

The court had provided a Ugandan french interpreter but he objected to him and told court that he will only take plea and allow trial only if court provided a Congolese french interpreter .

His case had been handled by two judges who were left with no choice but to adjourn it to another criminal session until a french interpreter only from Congo was found.

He also asked court to have his family members brought into the country before he could allow to be tried .

The brief facts about the offense is that the two suspects on the 10th day of July 2016 at Garden City Yusuf Lule Road in the Kampala district robbed Niwamanya Jason of his Motor Vehicle Reg.No.UAZ 157A Toyota Corona Premo, silver in colour, valued at 30 million Ugandan shillings and immediately or after the said Robert administered a dangerous drug which is chloroform to the said person .

These had hired Niwamanya to take them to Kawempe before the incident.

They were arrested after the brother of the victim Bahati Alex reported the matter to police after Agaba confessed to police that he knew the said car stolen but he was working for his boss a one Ngoie Gunta Joseph a resident of Lungujja zone 4 Rubaga division.

On the 20th of march this year, Kampala high court judge Vicent Tonny Okwanga also indefinitely halted their trial after the judge ruled that the suspect had played the language game to stop or delay his trial since febuary when him and his co accused were meant to take plea to the charges.

In February , Ngoei and Agaba failed to take plea after Ngoei who claims to be a businessman and a broker refused the judge to read to him the charges on grounds that he did not understand any language apart from French.

The judge labored with him to have court use English or at least the Swahili language since he was from Congo but he insisted told court that he needed a French interpreter through out his trial.

Justice Okwanga politely adjourned the case to allow state find a French Interpreter for him and further remanded him back to Luzira prison.

However, when the case came back in April for plea taking and trial, Ngoie instead objected to a Ugandan French Interpreter who was availed to interpret for him on grounds that he did not understand what the interpreter was saying.

This forced justice Okwanga to ask the French Interpreter what level of Education he had reached in which he explained that he was a qualified French teacher with a first class degree from the Makerere School of Language and that he has done French from both O and A level up to University.

Justice Okwanga wondered how Ngoei managed to live and do businesses in Uganda without knowing English yet majority of Ugandans do not understand or speak French.

The state also informed court that the suspect understands English since he was arrested in Lungujja in Rubaga Division within Kampala district with a Ugandan registered line and he also made a statement at Police in English with no French interpreter.

The judge also observed that the suspect communicates only in English with the two Ugandan government lawyers allocated to him who do not speak or understand French because he didnot have a private lawyer.

This forced the Judge to conclude that Ngoie understood the English language and speaks it fluently but he was playing the language game because he does not want to be tried.

Justice Okwanga also stated that Ngoie is using the pretex of not understanding English to either build up on Material to argue an appeal if he is convicted or to cliam that he was denied justice by unnecessary delay of his trial .

In conclusion Justice Okwanga then ruled that since he cannot try Ngoei in an English language which the suspect claims to not understand well, or use a Ugandan french interpreter that he also claims to not understand, the only option was to rather adjourn the case to the next convenient session that could be next year to give the court deputy Registra ample time to find the suspect a comfortable interpreter.

The judge has also expressed dismay over Ngoei’s tricks that have cost the state financially since all the witnesses were all secured from Kabale and Mukono, and were ready to testify but now, have to be refunded all their transport and other resources they have used to stay in Kampala since Monday this week and then sent back until when court will re-summon them back to testify.

However, after hearing the judge’s arguments , Ngoei who had refused to be tried in English had a change of mind but ot was too late since the Judge had already ruled and sent the two of them back to Luzira prison until the next convenient session .

Justice Vicent Tonny Okwanga expressed dismay over a decision by suspects including Ngoei who prolong their case hearing by demanding language interpretation despite understanding available languages in court.

Justice Okwanga expressed the concern while presiding over a court session of capital offenders who have been on remand for more than two years without trial.

These were mainly charged with aggravated defilement, aggravated robbery and murder among other capital offenses.

However when some of their cases came up for plea taking including that of Ngoei, they requested for language interpreters buy pretending to neither understand English, Luganda and Swahili the common languages spoken in Uganda and ready available in court .

The judge was even forced to inquire from the Luzira prison authorities to tell court on how they communicated with such suspects who claimed to only speak and understand Rutooro, Lugbara, Iteso, Runyankore,and French for those from Congo.

But when the prison authorities revealed to court that the alleged suspects understood English, Luganda and Swahili some suspects later had a change in mind and accepted to take plea.

However this was too late because the judge had already adjourned their cases and ordered state to provide different interpreters from the Makerere school of Language.

Justice Okwanga then wondered how someone who has spent such a long time on remand without trial could waste his chance he has finally gotten to seek justice by choosing to not understand any language available im court.

The court was also amazed by the fact that the said suspects were living in Uganda for along time with some transacting their businesses in Kampala were almost everyone speaks the said common languages.

He remanded them to Luzira prison on grounds that they seemed to be enjoying free food and accommodation in Luzira prison and warned them against complaining of their alleged constitutional rights being violated when they are the same people wasting courts time by asking for unnecessarily personal demands that requires funds and time.

CJ Katureebe sets up task force to investigate corruption in judiciary

By Sania Babirye

The Chief Justice, Bart Katureebe, has set up a six-member Task force, headed by the Inspector of Courts, Ms. Immaculate Busingye, to investigate allegations of corruption in the Judiciary.

According to an Office Instruction dated 30th of July 2019, the Task force has been tasked to commence business with immediate effect and report back to the Chief Justice within 60 days.

The newly set up task force is in response to investigative reports by media houses that exposes tendencies of corruption by judicial officers and a promise by the chief justice to investigate the alleged tendencies .

The Corruption Task force will then receive the media recordings with a view of identifying the implicated Judiciary staff, who would then be invited to have an interface with the Team.

Then force will then make a report to the Chief Justice with recommendations on the way forward by the 30th of September 2019.

The other Taskforce members are Mr. Vincent Emmy Mugabo (Registrar/Public Relations Officer), Ms. Susan Abinyo (Registrar Magistrates Affairs and Data Management), Mr. Godfrey Kawesa (President UJOA), Mr. Ayebare Tumwebaze (Assistant Registrar in the Office of the Chief Registrar/Projects), and Mr. Solomon Muyita (Senior Communications Officer).

The Instrument further states that the Chief Justice may extend the tenure of the Task force if need arises.

On July 9, the Chief Justice welcomed efforts by Vision Group to expose acts of bribery and corruption tendencies in the courts.

Justice Katureebe subsequently had an interface with the media organizations top editors, partly to commend them for the efforts, but also caution them against sensationalizing the issue of corruption in the courts.

The Chief Justice said his administration will ensure that any court staff captured receiving a bribe will be dealt with in accordance with the law.

“What has been happening is people say they have paid money for court services, but they are usually not willing to bring the evidence to us.

“We encourage such audits in all courts, and we are willing to do it as a partnership. Our aim should be to take action on the culprits by the Judicial Service Commission.”

He said the Judiciary shall continue to encourage court users and the public to use the available fora to come out and give evidence for firm action to be taken against the errant court staff.

UPC party condemns recent acts of violence

By Daudi Zirimala

The Uganda Peoples Congress (UPC) is concerned about the rising level of Violence in Society which is A threat to Peace And Development.

According to the party spokesperson Micheal Osinde of late, Uganda is experiencing a new wave of violence that causes a lot of concern and caution where some citizens are also picked from their homes or places of work in a violent manner and they undergo a lot of torture.

UPC calls upon Government to play her constitutional role to protect and promote human rights and re-assure her citizens of their safety and security.

The concerned Security Agencies should also conduct inquiries and investigations in the above captioned matters and bring the culprits of such acts to book.

Osinde says at this stage as we are getting closer to the General Elections of 2021, the country should be calm and heightened tensions should be avoided.

Uganda Peoples Congress therefore condemns all acts of insecurity, the senseless mob justice, abduction and torture of victims and the rabid anger as well as violence meted to judicial officers carrying their lawful activities in Courts of law. It is UPC’s contention that these and many more incidences of threat, insecurity and violence should cease and be contained by Government.

Stella Nyanzi sentenced to 18 months in prison

By Sania Babirye
Buganda road court grade one magistrate Gladys Kamasanyu has handed an 18 year jail sentence to Makerere university Researcher Dr.Stella Nyanzi.

Nyanzi was however sentenced in absentia after she was whsiked away from the video conferencing hall at Luzira for insulting the magistrate and flashing her breasts.

As always, the controversial scholar did not disappoint her supporters who were packed in court because as soon as she was produced before the magistrate via a video link, she did not waste time but put a show about her dissatisfaction with the video conferencing system.

She started shouting and raising her middle finger at the magistrate as she shouted on top of her voice before finally exposing her breasts on the video screen as the magistrate sat there and watched in total dismay.

However, Luzira prison security later whisked Dr.Nyanzi away from the video link forcing the magistrate to sentence her in absentia.

Meanwhile, Nyanzi will serve only 9 months out of the 18 sentenced after the magistrate subtracted the 9 months she had so far spent on remand.

There was also drama in court after Nyanzi’s supporters turned rowdy and started shouting, abusing and throwing bottles at the magistrate yo show their dissatisfaction with the decision by the magistrate to not have Nyanzi brought in court for her sentencing and the actual punishment of 18 months that she was given.

This force police to intervene to try and calm them down, however, this did not go well with Nyanzi’s out of control fubs who turned against the police officials and ended in a fight.
While sentencing her, the magistrate ruled that the offense of Cyber harassment crimes are on the rise and that there is need there is need to curb it down .

She also stated that she would have sentenced Nyanzi to a fine but a fine will not occasion any impact on Nyanzi since she is unremouseful despite being convicted of posting an obscene and vulgar poem attacking the person of the president and that of his late mother.

Britania Allied industries introduces splash Kachupa

By Edwin Muhumuza

Britannia Allied Industries has launched a new brand of juices called Splash Kachupa. This at an event held at their factory and office in Ntinda, Kampala. This is an addition to the wide range of juice brands already existing on the market.

Splash Kacupa comes in three flavours mainly Mango ,Apple and Orange in bottles of 400mls.

The Managing Director, Vinay Dawda said “our production facilities are among the most sophisticated and modern in the region and we possess a level of technological excellence compared to prevailing global standards.’’

He added that ‘’we have highly reliable process equipment and methods in all our production facilities.’’

His remarks came amid revelation that the company had invested US 5million a new state of the art production line from Italy.

The General Manager ,Sales and Marketing , Ritesh said that a nation-wide promotion is going on dubbed ‘’sip it Keep it’’ involving 10,000 outlets to distribute the product ,including free consumer sampling targeting 50,000 people through Point of Sale Materials, campus activities, media, and billboards.

Splash is the biggest juice brand in Uganda since its introduction in 1997. It has become Uganda’s number one occasion soft drink and has recently risen as one of the top alcoholic mixers in bars said the management.

According to the Managing Director, the launch of splash Kachupa is in line with the vision of becoming the largest food and beverage manufacturer in East Africa and will continue to introduce new products to meet the changing trends and needs of consumers.

He added that plans were underway to introduce the 250ml bottle which , will make it affordable whilst there are no intentions to produce a much bigger bottle.

Plastics remain a challenge for manufactures and environmentalists whose concerns stem from the increased pollution and non-degradable materials, however the company says it is committed to the association of plastic manufactures who ensure proper usage and disposal of such materials

The Capital FM Big Wedding is Back, bigger than ever

By Patricia Osman

Capital Radio Ltd has today launched its 7th edition of the Capital FM Big wedding promotion where a lucky couple gets to enjoy a fully paid for dream wedding.

With over 15 sponsors already on board, John Paul Mugwanya Capital Radio promotions manager says this edition is going to be even bigger and better urging interested listeners out there to send in their letters clearly stating why they think they deserve the lifetime treat.

‘We are happy to report that on Monday 29thJuly 2019 interested couples started applying to participate by writing to us and stating why they should be considered’, says Mugawanya.

He adds that Listeners are requested to submit in their love stories together with a full picture of them at Capital fm plot 1 cooper road Kisementi OR inbox via Capital FM official Facebook page, Capital FM Uganda OR email [email protected]

Mr. Mugwanya also says the promotion will be executed by the Over Drive hosted by Malaika and Oulanya.

100 couples will be shortlisted and subjected to further promotion tests where 20 couples will be selected.

These will then be asked to tell their story in just A MINUTE.
The best story will qualify basing on the voting by the listeners,here 10 couples will qualify to the next stage.

These 10 couples will be subjected to questions in Cookery, Clothing, Hobbies, Key mile stones and Family.
The listeners will pick the best 5.

This is the final stage where these will discuss various topics in Financial management, Conflict resolution and management among other topics.
Here is when the listeners will vote ultimate Capital FM Season 7 winner who will be announced on the 26th August 2019.

‘A number of sponsors have already come on board and are excited to be part of this amazing experience says Mr. Mugwanya.

Speke Resort Munyonyo is the main sponsor of the event.

The resort’s General Manager says they will offer dinner for over 500 invited guests, venue for the reception as well as house the newlyweds for a night

MB Image world will handle the Wedding photography and videography. Bahati John Bosco says they are more than honored to be part .

Cake Studio, comes with bottles of campaign and visual displays at the cake cutting moment so that no one misses out and promise to give the best.

KFC is excited to be part of the Capital Big wedding saying this is one of the ways they give back to the community.KFC is working on most of the graphic needs of the wedding.

Four Cousins’ Pheobe says that wine is a celebration of love and that at this event they will serve wine at every table.

RwandaAir will this time fly the couple business class to their honeymoon destination.

Uganda Airlines set to take maiden flight on 28th August

By Robert Segawa
The Uganda Airlines will take it’s maiden Flight on the 28th of August- 2019, this means in Just 26 days the waiting will be over for passengers interested to use CJ Bombardier.

This comes after an announcement by the national Carriers this morning, that starts starting August 28th the county’s Aircraft shall fly to Nairobi and Juba.

According to Uganda airline director for commercial services Jennifer Bamuturaki the airline will go to Juba, Nairobi twice every day and 3 times to Mogadishu.

The cranes will also fly to Dar- es Salaam, Kilimanjaro once a day, while flight to Bujumbura and Mombasa will be 3 times a week.

This was revealed during media interaction at the Golden Tulip hotel in Kampala this morning.

The Airline Chief executive officer Ephraim Bagenda, says come 2020 December they expect to boost the national Carriers by receiving 2 Airbus and will expand the routes to London, China, Hong Kong, India, United Arab Emirates as well as Accra Ghana.

He adds that there is a promotion going on for 2 months to interested customer in using Airlines.

BAT gross revenue hits shs.86.2 BN mark

By Edwin Muhumuza

British American Tobacco Uganda has posted gross revenues of Ushs 86.2 billion and a profit before tax of Ushs 9.7 billion.This in its half year results for the six months ended 30 June 2019.

BAT Uganda Managing Director, Mathu Kiunjuri said that in the first half of 2019, gross revenue increased by 17% to Ushs 86.2 billion driven by growth in volumes due to distribution efficiencies and portfolio transformation. Profit from operations increased by 11% to Ushs 9.8 billion due to the growth in revenues, partly offset by higher cost of operations.

The increase in cost of operations was in line with volume growth, inflationary increases and additional investment in the brand portfolio.

Profit before tax increased by 9% to Ushs 9.7 billion in line with growth in revenues, offset by finance lease costs recognised in line with revised accounting standards said Kiunjuri.

BAT Uganda Chairman, Hon. Elly Karuhanga said in as much as contribution to Government revenues in the form of Excise Duty, Value Added Tax and Corporation Tax increased by 19% to Ushs 50.2 billion, illicit trade in tax- evaded tobacco products continues to pose a threat to Government revenues and shareholder value.

According to third party research findings, the market saw an increase in illicit tax-evaded cigarette sales in the first quarter of this year, standing at 22.2%,translating into an estimated loss in Government revenue of UShs 30 billion annually.

“Whilst we applaud the Government of Uganda for steps taken to address the cost of doing business in this market, we reiterate that the trade in illicit tax-evaded cigarettes continues to pose a threat to the legitimate tobacco industry and sustainability of Government revenues,” He noted.

Karuhanga also expressed confidence in the exceptional quality of talent within the Company and partnerships with over 30,000 business partners, as the right strategy to deliver business growth and continued value to all stakeholders.

Leaders worry about growing number of sex workers in Mbale

By Moses kidandi

Local leaders in the eastern district of Mbale have expressed concern over the increasing number of prostitutes in the whole town which is putting the number of youth in Mbale at risk of being infected with HIV while others stand high chances of being addicted to prostitutes.

Many of the prostitutes come from Kenya,Kampala and the north and are mainly operating on Republic Street, Central Road, near North Road Primary School, Market place, Lorry Park, Manafwa Road and Cathedral Avenue.

Police has been blamed for the laxity which has caused rise in numbers of sex workers in Mbale.

Mr Robert Tukei, the Elgon region Police spokesperson, said they would soon conduct an operation to arrest all sex workers in the town.

“We shall take action. We are going to arrest and charge them accordingly,” he said. Ms Lilian Nakawesi, the Deputy Resident District Commissioner, says sex workers are also becoming a security threat in Mbale.

Kabaka Mutebi urges his subjects to revive cash crop growing

By Daudi Zirimala

The Kabaka of Buganda Ronald Muwenda Mutebi has highlighted the need to revive cooperatives in order address the problem of poverty and unemployment among his people.

Speaking during his 26th coronation at Nkumba,Kabaka Mutebi said that once cooperatives are revived people would be able to address their own challenges rather depending on handouts from political leaders.

He also implored his subjects to embrace coffee growing and cotton saying it is through these cash crops that people in Buganda managed to increase their house hold incomes and improve their livelihood.