State wants Kitata and others convicted

By Sania Babirye

The state has asked the army court to find guilty and consequently convict the jailed Boda -boda 2010 chairman Hajji Abdullah Kitata and his co accused.

These are charged with unlawful possession of firearms , ammunition and Military gear.

While making their final submissions before the General court martial sitting in Makindye which is chaired by Lt.Gen.Andrew Gutti, Raphael Mugisha the state prosecutor informed court that they had adduced sufficient evidence to prove the charges against Kitata and his co accused.

On the 8th of this month, Kitata’s defense team closed their case and asked court to acquit him.

These led by Shaban sanya told the army court that their client is innocent and should be freed on all charges on grounds that prosecution failed to adduce sufficient evidence to prove the alleged charges including the required ingredients in the said charges.

According to Kitata’s defense team, the state did not produce any concrete evidence to link Kitata to the recovered golden pistol and an SMG riffle which were allegedly found on him at the time of his arrest in a Hotel room at Vine Tea hotel in Wakaliga a Kampala suburb.

The lawyers stated that prosecution through out the trial, did not provide any evidence from an independent witness out of the four witnesses including any staff of Vine Tea Hotel , footage from a surveillance camera, a ballistic report or an Investigating officer who would have proved beyond reasonable doubt that Kitata was indeed in possession of the guns in the said hotel.

During the trial two out of the four state witnesses including the arresting officer claimed that they had arrested Kitata and also recovered the said items on kitata from his hotel room.

According to Sanywa, his client’s prosecution is cosmetic and one intended at pleasing the public since parliament had already singled out Kitata as one of the alleged untouchable

Kitata blames contradiction in statements on overstay on remand

By Sania Babirye
The troubled bodaboda 2010 leader Abdallah Kitata has finally told court that he was the patron of the defunct association contradicting his first statement but blamed the contradictions on memory loss.

Kitata had returned before the General court Martial today for further defense.
And while defending himself, the troubled Kitata contradicted his 7th January defense in which he claimed that he was not the leader of BodaBoda 2010 group but was instead the chairman of the National Union of Drivers, Cyclists and Allied Workers in Uganda (NUDCAW).

But while appearing before the seven Member team chaired by Lt.Gen.Andrew Gutti, Kitatta surprised court when he accepted being the association”s patron but not the chairman.

To justify the difference, Kitata explained that as a patron, he mobilized boda -Boda riders to support the activities of the ruling NRM , lure and recruit them into the party and discourage them to being against government activities .

He also accepted to have undergone a muchaka- muchaka course at Kyankwanzi and that shooting at close range was part of the training that he underwent yet he had earlier denied ever holding a gun for the 40 years of he has been on this earth.

His response followed after Brigadier Joseph Arocha one of the seven members of the army court asked him if he was not taught how to hold a gun at a short range shooting, which is a requirement for every NRM cadre.

However, Kitata maintained that an alleged golden pistol and SMG riffle that prosecutions claimed to have found in his hotel room in Wakaliga did mot belong to him.

Kitata further amazed court when he attributed his contradictions in his defense due to memory loss caused by the long time he has spent on remand at Makindye military barracks were he has been since February 2019.

Kitata began his defense on the 7th of January 2018 by denying all the charges sanctioned on him including being in unlawful possession of a pistol and also being a leader of the notorious Bodaboda 2010 group that terrorized many Ugandans.

He swore by the Quran to give his sworn in evidence before the seven member team chaired by Lt.Gen.Andrew and informed court that he intends to produce three witnesses including his driver Ibrahim Sekajja and bodyguard Sowali Ngobi to prove his innocence but these are all charged with Kitata.

Through his lawyer Shaban Sanywa, Kitata told court that for the 40 years he has lived on earth, he has never held a gun , live bullets or possessed any military uniforms.

Kitata also told court that he came to know about the alleged golden pistol while it was being displayed in court by the state.

He however confessed before court that the pistol and an SMG riffle belonged to his body guard and co accused Sowali Ngobi whom he has listed as one of his witness to prove his innocence

Kitata who will be making one year on remand at Makindye military barracks then advised the army court to instead ask Ngobi on how the alleged items reached in his car.

He revealed to court when asked on how he acquired the bodyguard, that that during the 2010 Buganda Kingdom riots , he reached out to his party’s national chairman President Museveni for his security concerns who in turn also delegated former police chief Gen Kale Kayihura to assign him (Kitata) a plain clothed police bodyguard .

Kitata also denied being a leader or member of Boda -boda 2010 group clarifying that he is only in –charge of 2 offices; one being that of the NRM chairman of Lubaga division and another is that of National Union of Drivers and cyclists and Allied workers Association (NUDICAWA).

And as a result he denied having any connection and knowledge of the Millitary uniforms and caps that the army says were recovered from the offices of Boda- boda 2010 at Nateete.

While beginning his defense, Kitata narrated to court how he was arrested from a Hotel rest room at Vine Tea Hotel in Wakaliga by CMI operatives .

He told court that on the 20th of January 2018 , he left his home in Najjanankumbi at about 10am and headed for Vine Tea Hotel to meet some people being an NRM leader .

That after the said meeting , he booked into one of the Hotel rooms from where he saw Army officers surrounding the entire Hotel and some knocking on his Hotel room door.

He has now urged Lt Gen Andrew Gutti to look at the footage caught on a CCTV camera at Vine Hotel before making his decision.

Kitata and nine others are charged with unlawful possession of firearms, ammunition and Military attires before the General Court Martial at Makindye.

Prosecution led by Maj. Rapheal Mugisha led 4 evidence from 4 witnesses stating that a golden pistol loaded with live bullets was recovered on
Kitata during his arrest at Vine Tea Hotel in Wakaliga.

The said items are said to be a monopoly of the army.

Court demands answers on Kitata’s ownership of fire arms

By Sania Babirye

The General court martial has ruled that the jailed Boda Boda 2010 patron Abdulah Kitatta with 9 others have a case to answer about the alleged charges of unlawful possession of fire arms and ammunition.

Army court chair lt.Gen.Andrew Gutti has made the ruling after proving that prosecution led by major Rapheal Mugisha had adduced sufficient evidence to prove the alleged charges.

Those ordered to defend themselves with Kitata include Ngobi Sowali,Kibirige Joel , Mugema Hassan, Ssebatta Hassan, Twinomujuni Amoni,Sekajja Ibrahim and Ssebandeke John

While the three who have been acquitted include Kayondo John, Sengooba Hassan, and Ssemwogerere Sunday.

While acquitting the three the court ruled that the suspects were not at the crime of the scene by the time the offenses were committed.

This month prosecution led by major Rapheal Mugisha concluded its submissions with four witnesses asking court to find that Kitata had a case to answer.
Prosecution presented four witnesses including private Richard Kasaija who testified on the 21st of June that he was part of the police team that arrested Kitata, and that they recovered an SMG gun, three pistols guns, 50 rounds of ammunition, Military uniforms and caps in Kitata’s room and car that was parked in the hotel’s back yard.

However the defense led by Kitata’s Shaban Sanya had asked court to acquit Kitata on grounds that prosecution did not provide sufficient evidence to prove the alleged charges.
On the 17th of july 2017 , Sanywa accused CMI of planting a golden pistol and ammunition that were allegedly recovered in Kitata’s room at Vine Hotel in Wakaliga in Lubaga division on the 20th of January were he was arrested while in hiding.

Kitata and now 9 others are charged with unlawful possession of firearms and Military gear.

Kitata faces 5 counts of being in unlawful possession of an SMG gun, 3 pistols and 50 rounds of live ammunitions that prosecution states were found on him on 18th/January 2018 at vine hotel in Wakaliga.

According to Prosecution the above items are a monopoly of the UPDF.

Kitata’s lawyers demand his release from military court

By Sania Babirye

Defense lawyers representing jailed Boda-Boda 2010 patron Abdullah Kitata have asked the General Court Martial to set him free saying he is being maliciously prosecuted as the charges were brought against him by the state to purposely keep him way from society.

The team led by Shaban Sanywa contends that the state’s bad faith is exhibited in failure to lead evidence from an independent witness such as the manager of Vine Hotel Wakaliga where Kitata was allegedly arrested from and instead decided to rely only on the evidence of 4 UPDF officers (attached to CMI) to have Kitata defend himself .

Sanywa has also faulted the state for failing to adduce the evidence of an investigating officer and any expert witness who would have guided court on what happened at the scene of crime(-Vine Hotel) , if they had access to the footage caught on the CCTV or whether there were any forensic examinations done to establish if the golden pistol, ammunition and military uniforms which prosecution brought as exhibits in court indeed had been touched by Kitata.

The Lawyer further contends that failure to bring any evidence inform of an endorsed search warrant and certificate to show who and how the said items were allegedly recovered from the offices of Boda-boda 2010 , moved and stored too weakened prosecution’s case .

Sanywa adds that prosecution hid these witnesses in bad faith because it knew that the evidence they would give would not be in their favor to place any of the suspects at the scene of crime because they had arrested all the 13 accused before raiding to search the offices of Boda -boda 2010.

Sanywa then asked the seven member court led by Lt Gen Andrew Gutti to acquit Kitata and the group because prosecution has not made out a case to warrant them offer an explanation to the nation how they came to possess the guns and Military uniforms.

kitatta and the group are on remand at Makindye police Military barracks and Luzira prison respectively since February on charges of unlawful possession of firearms, ammunition and Military hardware which prosecution says its a monopoly of only the UPDF.

Court has adjourned the case to the 10th/December to enable prosecution ably respond to Kitata’s lawyers before it goes a head to pronounce itself on the same .

Court fears Kittata’s release will interfere with witnesses

By Sania Babirye
The General Court Martial at Makindye has  dismissed a second bail application filed by jailed Boda-Boda 2010 patron Abdullah Kitatta.
The seven member  court chaired by Lt. Gen Andrew Gutti has unanimously ruled that Kitatta being  the NRM chairman of Lubaga division and a  leader of Uganda Drivers and cyclists association, is an influential person in society who can interfere with lined up court witnesses.
The court has also ruled that Kitatta has led no proof to the effect that  his alleged grave illness cannot be managed/ treated  on remand by  doctors at Makindye police Military barracks .
 Kitatta was arrested on 20th/January 2018 by officials from CMI on charges of unlawful possession of firearms, ammunition and Military gear.
 Since then his attempts to be freed on bail have proved futile as the Army court keeps on rejecting his pleas for bail with the recent one being  filed on 30th/ August /2018;  2 days after  the same court  had released the former IGP Gen  Kale Kayihura  who is said to have illegally given him(Kitatta) the guns .
In his dismissed bail applications, Kitatta says his health is in jeopardy because  Doctors at  Luzira prison where he was first remanded to advised him to investigate and urgently  carry out special medical tests for a grave -illness,  something he says he has not yet  done for the last ten  months.
 Kitatta also listed several  other grounds for bail including;   bail  being his constitutional right , having fixed places of abode at both Nakasajja in Mukono and Nkokonjeru in Nsangi and the fact that  he is a sole bread winner of his extended family of 3 wives and 13 children  which he claims is psychologically and financially constrained because  of  his continued incarceration.
Kitatta whose first bail  application was rejected  in June  for  fear that he would interfere with state witnesses and for presenting low ordinary surities , this time   however had    presented his long time friend  Suleiman Walusimbi a public relations officer from State House, the Rubaga Division NRM General Secretary Muhammad Kibirige and his area LC1 chairperson Abdul Matovu.
This court has found his surities to be  substantial but due to the grave nature of his offenses that attract a maximum penalty of death, he has been denied bail.
He has therefore  been remanded back at Makindye Millitary police Barracks until the 13th/November for further hearing of his case.
This has angered his family and friends who had come to welcome him back from prison and vowed not to set foot at court again.

Kitata trial flops

By Sania Babirye
Further hearing of the case against Boda-Boda 2010 patron Abdullah Kitata has flopped this morning before General court Martial after being suspended for one month to have the court reconstituted.
This morning state prosecutor Major Rapheal Mugisha informed the seven member court chaired by  Lt.Gen.Andrew Gutti that he did not summon their witness private Richard Kasaijja  to be cross examined by the defense team and needed more time to do so.
Kitata’s trial with 12 others commenced on the 21st of June with Kasaija pinning Kitata of having been found with firearms at his  hotel room at Vine Hotel in Wakaliga in Lubaga division on the 20th of January were he was in hiding.
He said that they recovered a loaded and coached pistol and an SMG gun and 15 rounds of ammunition in his car that was also  parked in the Hotel parking yard which exhibits were paraded in court.
Kasaija further  revealed that his team  arrested kitata and his brother Uzailu Kiwalabye who is the prime suspect in the murder of  case clinic accountant Francis Erunga who is believed to have been killed and his body later burnt to ashes.
Kitata and 12 others are charged with  unlawful possession of firearms and military gear.
Kitata   faces  5   counts of being in unlawful possession of an SMG gun, 3 pistols  and 50 rounds of live ammunition that  prosecution states were  found on him on 18th/January 2018 at vine hotel in Wakaliga.
 According to   Prosecution the above items   are  only a monopoly of the UPDF.

Kitata challenges army court trials

By Sania Babirye
Troubled leader of the now defunct   Boda-Boda 2010 Abdullah Kitata who is charged with unlawfully possessing fire arms and army uniforms has challenged his trial by the Army court.
Kitata has filed an application  before the Highcourt  in which he wants court to declare that the General court martial sitting in Makindye is illegally trying him.
In his application , Kitata is suing not only the army court but also it’s registrar John Bizimana, Judge Advocate Gideon Katinda, the Army prosecutors ,  the Attorney Genaral and the Director of Public Prosecutions.
He accuses the plaintiffs of  violating his fundamental rights by trying him in the army court yet he is not a soldier.
 According to Kitata, high court should declare his trial null and void on grounds that the army court has no powers to try him since he is not an army officer but a civilian.
He says that in that regard it should be the high court with jurisdiction  to try him and wants an order also transferring his case to either a magistrate or criminal division of  the high court.
This application  comes after the army court last week commenced his trial in which his alleged three guns, 15 bullets and army uniforms were exhibited in court as evidence to prove the charges against him.
The same court also denied Kitata’s bail application on grounds that he is likely to interfere with witnesses due to his close working relationship with the Uganda Police police and luck of substantial sureties.
The same court also refused Kitata’s request to be transferred transferred from the Makindye military police barracks were he is currently on remand to Luzira prison.
Kitata has been on remand  since February /2018 .
Him and 12 others are charged with  unlawful possession of firearms and Military gear.
Kitata   faces  5   counts of being in unlawful possession of an SMG gun, 3 pistols  and 50 rounds of live ammunition that  prosecution states were  found on him on 18th/January 2018 at vine hotel in Wakaliga.
 According to   Prosecution the above items   are  only a monopoly of the UPDF.

Kitata’s plea to leave jail hangs in balance

By Sania Babirye
The leader of  the now defunct Boda-Boda 2010  Abdallah Kitata will have to wait a little Longer to see if he might get a temporary release from jail.
This is after the General court martial sitting in Makindye failed to pronounce itself on his bail application due to its busy calender.
The seven member court chaired by Lt. Gen.Andrew Gutti  today remanded Kitata back to Makindye military police barracks until the 21st of this May despite having set today as the ruling date.
Today, Kitata through his lawyer Shaban Sanya begged the court to determine his bail  or set an earlier date on grounds that his life can not contain the harsh life he is subjected to while on remand.
Among these harsh conditions that Kitata alleged include the fact that he is not allowed to perform his five obligatory daily prayers as a Muslim and a tiny jail cell that he is living in without lift.
However the court ruled otherwise and adjourned his bail ruling until the 21st of May saying they are currently busy.
Kitata applied  to be temporarily released from prison  where he has been on remand since February /2018 on grounds he has a terrible health condition  which can not be adequately treated while he is on remand at Makindye police Military barracks and that he can not perform his duties as a sole bread winner for his family and those duties as NRM Rubaga division vice chairman among others .
However state maintains that Kitata should not be granted bail because he is likely to abscond from bail and interfere with investigations.
Kitata and 12 others are charged with  unlawful possession of firearms and Military gear.
Kitata   faces  5   counts of being in unlawful possession of an SMG gun, 3 pistols  and 50 rounds of live ammunition that  prosecution states were  found on him on 18th/January 2018 at vine hotel in Wakaliga.
 According to   Prosecution the above items   are  only a monopoly of the UPDF.

Kitata’s request to moved from Makidye to Luzira prison not granted

By Sania Babirye
The General Court Martial sitting in Makindye has started hearing of  the case against the leader of  Boda-Boda 2010 Abdullah Kitata and 12 others.
Today, prosecution led by Raphael Mugisha has presented two witnesses including Private Ruchard Kasajja to testify against Kitata and others before   army court chaired by Lt.Gen. Andrew Gutti.
Kitata and his 12 co accused are together charged with  6 counts including unlawful possession of firearms, live ammunition, Military head gears and uniforms
However  Kitata  is facing   5 separate  charges of being in unlawful possession of an SMG gun, 3 pistols  and 50 rounds of live ammunition which Prosecution  says  are  only a monopoly of the Uganda Peaople’s Defense Forces.
The rest of the  accused  are said to have connived with Kitata to unlawfully  possess  Military head gears and uniforms that    were allegedly  found on  them  on the 18th/January 2018  in  a Motor vehicle at Vine Hotel in Wakaliga within Kampala city.
The  army  court did also refuse Kitata’s  request to be transferred from Makindye military police barracks back to Luzira prison when he had alleged that he was not
receiving enough or adequate  medical care and access to his relatives  while in the army detention.
Gen Gutti declined on grounds that his decision to have Kitata remanded to Makindye barracks can not be reversed since Kitata was transferred for security reasons.
He has since applied for bail citing poor health conditions.