Four jailed for murdering business man in Mityana

By Sania Babirye

The Kampala High Court has handed a life in prison sentence to four men who were convicted of murdering Mityana business man Kasadha Mulinde Kimbugwe over land wrangles in 2019.

Kampala High Court Judge Wilson Kwesiga has stated that the sentence is to serve as a punishment since the convicts killed the deceased in a cruel manner.

The four led by Ibrahim Muyingo the area LC1 chairperson of Minana-Galabi were on Monday convicted by the same court on grounds that prosecution had adduced sufficient evidence to prove the said murder.

However, Justice Kwesiga acquitted the other two accused including Rev.Fr.Lawrence Muduse Yawe over the said murder.

Prosecution states that the accused persons on August 7th 2019 at Minana-Galabi village, Ttamu Division, Mityana municipality in the Mityana District, unlawfully with malice aforethought killed a one Kasadha Mulinde Kimbugwe.

According to evidence adduced by Prosecutions, the deceased was found with his his head cut off by the accused persons over a one square mile land.

The head was found near the homes of the convicts who had publicly threatened to kill him.

Prosecution also claimed that on that fateful day, the deceased before he met his death was moving around the village, giving out letters to tenants who were squatting on his land which covered four villages including, Minana, Galabi, Jabukw and Jamuvole in Tamu Division in Mitiyana.

Court Issues Criminal Summons Against Abid Alam

By Sania Babirye

Buganda road court has issued criminal summons against local investor and Indian consultant Alam Abid Mahmoud who is charged with conspiracy to defeat justice together with police officer Wanyama Austeen Wilber the Wamala regional CID officer is state fails to complete their investigations by the 16th of October 2020.

Grade one magistrate Fedlise Awoa has issued the criminal summons after Abid failed to show up in court today for further hearing of his case.

He has now been ordered to appear in court on the 7th of April without fail.

The said officer is said to have released information to Abid which was in regard to a case of terrorizing residents of Kassanda over a piece of land in which Abid was being investigated by Kassanda police station.

Prosecution States that Abid and the officer committed the said offense on the 8th of April 2020 between Mityana police station and Ntinda in Kampala .

These were arrested by the state house anti corruption unit headed by col.Edith Nakalema on the 9th of April 2020 after a top off.

Young lawyers in a mock trial at EACJ

By Sania Babirye

The East African Court of Justice has hosted a Mock trial (Moot court) for young lawyers from the three East African Member States, which helps the Lawyers to practice and familiarize with the East African Laws and EACJ Rules of procedure.

The Mock Trial helps the Lawyers to practice and familiarize with the East African Laws and EACJ Rules of procedure.

These came from Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania and were also trained on matters of public interest in Arusha.

The moot Court was presided over by three Judges representing the three Partner States including Justice Fauz Twaib retired Judge of the High Court of Tanzania, Prof. Frederick Ssempebwa, a Senior Counsel from Uganda and His Worship Yufnalis Okubo, Registrar EACJ representing a Judge from Kenya on the bench.

The case that was being argued in the Mock Trial was touching on the issue on movement of goods within East African Member States, where Uganda, Tanzania, Kenya and the Secretary General of the East African Community were sued before the EACJ on an alleged violation of the Customs Union, Common Market Protocols and the Treaty for the establishment of the EAC, over goods (wines) originating from Jamaica were imported within Uganda allegedly claiming to have been manufactured from Uganda and then later exported to Tanzania through Kenya.

After the hearing of the submissions presiding Judges delivered the Ruling in favor of the East African Law Society the (Applicant) saying that the 3 Member States breached the EAC Common Market Protocol, Customs Union Protocol and EAC Treaty as follows; Kenya detaining the goods at the border and failing to allow the Tanzania Nationals entry was a breach of the free movement of people as entrenched in the EAC Common Market Protocol. Uganda’s failure to collect external tariffs and was condemned for not protecting goods (wines) manufactured within EAC Partner States by allowing the goods allegedly manufactured within Uganda to be exported in Tanzania. The Judges also in their ruling found that the EAC Secretary General failed to observe and ensure that the Protocols and the Treaty provisions were not violated.

The Registrar of the Court His Worship Yufnalis Okubo on his part thanked the Center for Strategic Litigation for utilizing the EACJ to train the Young Lawyers on the Community Laws which will improve their skills and knowledge to enable them competently appear before the regional Court as it has been a challenge to some Lawyers from different EAC Partner States who appear before the Court and are not familiar with EACJ Rules of procedure as well EAC Treaty and the Protocols.

His Worship also called upon the East African Young Lawyers to make use of the EACJ Sub-Registries in the Partner States Capitals and file their cases that may arise on EAC Treaty and Protocols violation because filing a case at EACJ is free.

Prisoners advised against unreasonable offers under plea bargaining

By Sania Babirye

The Director of Public Prosecution Jane Frances Abodo has emphasized the importance of plea bargaining to intimates at Paliisa government prison which she says provides an opportunity for those who commit crimes to receive quick justice amidst challenges of limited human resource and funds which affects them from holding full trials.

However, she has cautioned the inmates about making unreasonable offers as the exercise was not meant for handshakes.

Justice Abodo was speaking at the launching of the plea bargaining session at the prison by principle Judge Flavia Zeija

Justice Abodo says that her office takes plea bargaining very seriously and that, that is why her office created the Plea Bargaining Unit within the Department of General Case Work and the assignment of officers thereunder.

The DPP assured the inmates that even those who had not yet been committed to the High Court for trial could benefit from the exercise as they could be committed there and then and emphasized that petty offenders too could take part in the exercise.

Meanwhile, Justice Zeija has explained to the inmates that plea bargaining availed them the opportunity of negotiating their sentences unlike full trials but advised them to make reasonable offers.

He further informed them that plea bargaining would afford them early sentences availing them opportunities to enroll in prison programs such as school.

Bouncer sent to jail

By Sania Babirye

City hall court grade one Magistrate Valerian Tuhimbise jails 30 year old Eclas Kirinya a bouncer with Mess Bar to four months in Kitalya prison for defrauding 200,000 shillings from a taxi driver by pretending to be a KCCA law enforcement officer.

This is after Kirinya pleaded guilty to the charge of obtaining money by false pretense.

He however begged court to he lenient on him because the ongoing lock down on all bars by president Museveni has left him unable to feed him or his family forcing him into desperate measures.

He is said to have committed the said offence on the 9th of February 2021 at Arua Park in downtown Kampala.

Its alleged that on that fateful day at around Midday, the victim a one Shaban Wandera was working when the convict accused him of offloading and loading passengers from unauthorized stage.

Kirinya then presented himself as a KCCA law enforcement officer and arrested him but during the said arrest, .

However, during the arrest Kirinya asked Wandera to give him UGX 200,000 or else he takes him to police.

Owiny Dollo urges petitioners to let court do its work

By Sania Babirye

The Chief Justice of Uganda Alifonse Owiny Dollo has asked all petitioners in the concluded presidential election including parties involved in the Robert Kyagulanyi Election Petition and the Media to let the court do its mandated work instead of using social media as a kangaroo court.

While presiding over the pre trial hearing of Kyagulanyi’s petition, Justice Dollo noted that he has been seeing on the media some people who are party in the said petition already claiming that they are going to win the elections while mad sliding their opponents which justice Dollo says is unethical.

Dollo says although the courts of laws may not be perfect, but they have the mandate to deliver justice in such matters unlike Kangaroo courts that are illegal.

He has called all petitioners to strengthen the courts of law by letting them do their work and act responsible.

Dodoviko granted bail

By Sania Babirye

The Makindye court chief Magistrate Prosy Katushabe has granted bail to the suspect Dodoviko Mwanje and seven police officers who are charged with the illegal demolition of St.Peters church in Ndeeba in August this year.

These have been ordered to deposit two million each while their sureties have been ordered to execute a non cash bail of 100 million shillings.

The suspects have also been barred from travelling outside the country without Clarence from court and ordered to deposit their passports with court.

The case has now been adjourned to the age 16th of this month for further mention after state prosecutor Nakato Lydia informed court that investigations are still on going.

Prosecution states that Dodo and Ivan Katongole a KCCA Urban planner between March and August 2020, they conspired with several senior police officers and other people who are already on remand at Kitalya government prison to demolish st. Peter’s church in Ndeeba ;the property of Church of Uganda.

Katongole is said to have sanctioned the demolition of this church.

Among the senior police officers implicated in this matter is the Superintendent of police David Epedu , the Katwe police station DPC , ASP Mugisha Yeko Kato ; the Officer in-charge of Ndeeba police , SSP Rashid Agero and Martin Adero; who are police Field Force unit commanders .

The police officers separately face a charge of disobeying lawful orders of commissioner of police Moses Kafeero, which were to over see security deployment at St. Peter’ church in order to avert any possible demolition .

Other people including a building inspection Engineer of Lubaga division , a mechanic and a veteran soldier among others are charged with causing malicious damage to St. Peter’s church
and theft of church property such as chairs and doors .

These 21 suspects who are on remand at Kitalya prison have participated in today’s court proceedings via video conferencing having been already charged and denied any involvement in the demolition of the said church which happened in wee hours of 10th/August 2020.

Court denies Dodoviko and others bail

By Sania Babirye

The state has asked Makindye court chief Magistrate Prosy Katushabe to deny bail to the 20 including key suspect Dodoviko Mwanje and seven police officers who are charged with the illegal demolition of st.peters church in Ndeeba in August this year.

Lead prosecutors Noah Oponya and Lydia Nakato have told court that the said matter is of a public interest/demand and that all accused persons are health enough to withstand prison life.

Oponyo has further added that hey do not know the permanent residence of Dodoviko since he did not present before court documents showing his residence which makes stressing him hard in case he jumps bail.

On the police officers, state has contested some of their sureties presented on grounds that they are not substantial since they are not on their ranks.

Prosecution states that Dodo and Ivan Katongole a KCCA Urban planner between March and August 2020, they conspired with several senior police officers and other people who are already on remand at Kitalya government prison to demolish st. Peter’s church in Ndeeba ;the property of Church of Uganda.

Katongole is said to have sanctioned the demolition of this church.

Among the senior police officers implicated in this matter is the Superintendent of police David Epedu , the Katwe police station DPC , ASP Mugisha Yeko Kato ; the Officer in-charge of Ndeeba police , SSP Rashid Agero and Martin Adero; who are police Field Force unit commanders .

The police officers separately face a charge of disobeying lawful orders of commissioner of police Moses Kafeero, which were to over see security deployment at St. Peter’ church in order to avert any possible demolition .

Other people including a building inspection Engineer of Lubaga division , a mechanic and a veteran soldier among others are charged with causing malicious damage to St. Peter’s church and theft of church property such as chairs and doors .

These 21 suspects who are on remand at Kitalya prison have participated in today’s court proceedings via video conferencing having been already charged and denied any involvement in the demolition of the said church which happened in wee hours of 10th/August 2020.

Hearing of the bail application is still on going

Two remanded for robbing a bank

By Sania Babirye

City hall court has remanded two men from Kasanda district for allegedly robbing Opportunity Bank Head office in Kampala 309,000,000 million shillings.

The suspects include 44 year old Sulaiman Katumba a businessman and 42 year old Godfrey Ssenyonjo a driver.

The two have appeared before a grade one magistrate Valerian Tuhimbise and pleaded not guilty to the offense of theft.

They have now been remanded to Sentema government prison until the 26th of this month for trial.

It is alleged that the two and others still at large between December 2019 and January 2020 at Kamwokya Opportunity Bank Head office stole 309,000,000shillings the property of Opportunity Bank.

OPM officials ask to relieved of the relief food charges

By Sania Babirye

Lawyers representing four officials from the office of the prime minister led by the permanent Secretary Christine Guwatudde Kintu who are charged with inflating relief food prices meant for vulnerable people in the ongoing COVID-19 lock down between March and April has asked the anti corruption court to dismiss the said charges and set their clients free.

These led by McDusman Kabega have told grade one magistrate Sarah Namusobya that the said charges should be dismissed because they are not clear.

However, prosecution led by Kawuka James has asked court to not dismiss the said charges maintaining that the said charges are legitimate and clear.

Other suspects include Wanjala Joel, the under Secretary/accounting officer, Owor John, commissioner in charge of relief and disaster preparedness and Lutimba Kyeyune Fred Henry, the assistant commissioner in charge of procurement.

These were granted a three million cash bail each after on the fourth of May after being arrested on the 14th of April and pleaded not guilty to charges of colluding to commit fraudulent actions contrary to rules governing procurement and disposal of public Assets (PPDA Act).

Prosecution states that the above persons in their respective positions between the 31st March and 8th April 2020 at the office of the OPM situated at plot 9-11Apollo Kagwa road in Kampala district colluded together to commit a fraudulent practice during the procurement of food relief for COVID-19 by inflating prices from those by the suppliers.

The suspects were arrested last week by the State House Anti-corruption unit led by col.Edith Nakalema.