Kitata to spend over 8 years in jail

The General Court Martial at Makindye has sentenced Hajji Abudallah Kitatta and his body guard Detective Constable Sowali Ngobi to serve 8years, 8 months and 6 days at Luzira prison on charges of being in illegal possession of firearms and ammunition.

While sentencing the two, the court’s chairman Lt. Gen Andrew Gutti ruled that Kitata and Ngobi deserved to serve a maximum sentence of ten years but deduct the one and half months period that they have each spent on remand at Luzira .

The army court has also took into consideration the fact that Kitatta and Ngobi are first offenders who have no known criminal record and that there is no proof that the said guns they were convicted of were ever uses to commit a crime.

However the Court noted that Kitatta and Ngobi were convicted of a rampant and prevalence offense of possessing illegal guns and ammunition which has caused a lot of Mayhem in society and that such a punishment would serve as a deterrent sentence.

The army court has also told them to appeal within 14days the sentence and conviction if they are dissatisfied.

On Monday, the seven army court led by Lt.Gen.Andrew Gutti found Kitata and Ngobi guilty of unlawful possession of firearms without a valid license on Monday .

The army court relied on evidence produced by four state witnesses and a yellow gold pistol, an SMG riffle, army uniforms and live bullets that were recovered at their association offices and in a room at vine hotel in Wakaliga were Kitata was arrested from .

However the army court acquitted eight of Kitatta’s co-accused who have been facing only one count of unlawful possession of Military uniforms and caps saying prosecution adduced no adequate evidence to warrant. conviction.

They include Ssenfuka Matia, Kibirige Joel, Twinomujuni Amon,Sebata Hassan,Sebandeke John,Mugema Hussein,Bwanika Fred,and Sekajja Ibrahim.

These had been on remand for one year and four months at Luzira prison .

The same court also dismissed against Kitata charges of unlawful possession of Military attires and and a Pistol that the Uganda Police lawfully issued to his body Guard Sowali Ngobi to discharge his professional duties .

Ngobi’s conviction falls a testimony by the jailed former police special investigations commandant Nixon Agasirwe who testified that he did order for the issuance of the said golden Pistol to Ngobi but not an SMG riffle.

Meanwhile the state asked the army court to hand Kitata and his co convict a maximum sentence .

Major Raphael Mugisha who is the State prosecutor said the sentence will serve as a deterrent to would be offenders since such offenses are on the rise in the country.

However, Kitata’s lawyer Shaban Sanya asked court to hand them a non custodial sentence since they have families with school going children, with Kitata having more than one wife and the sole bread winner

Sanya also said that Kitata was sick with diabetes and that he has been working for the government including being the chairman of NRM in Rubaga division.

He further said that they have been on remand for one year and four months and are now reformed and that the guns they have been found of unlawfully possessing have never been used in any criminal way and that all the accused have been obedient through out trial.

Sanya further said that the alleged guns were also issued to them by those in charge of them, asking court to take that in account and be lenient to them.

Kitata denies being in possession of guns and being bodaboda 2010 leader

By Sania Babirye

The former leader of the defunct Boda -Boda 2010 group Abudallah Kitata has began his defense today before the general court martial sitting in Makindye.

Kitata swore through the Quran to give his sworn in evidence which will give the state a chance to cross examine him on his defense.

He has revealed before the seven member team chaired by Lt.Gen.Andrew that he will be producing three witnesses including his driver Ibrahim Sekajja and bodyguard Sowali Ngobi to prove his innocence .

However , these are all charged with Kitata.

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 Kitatta during his arrest at Vine Tea Hotel in Wakaliga.

However Kitata through his lawyer Shaban Sanywa, Kitata has 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.

Kitatta 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 has now advised the army court to instead ask Ngobi on how the alleged items reached in his car.

He has further 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 has 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 has denied having any connection and knowledge of the Military uniforms and caps that the army says were recovered from the offices of Boda- boda 2010 at Nateete.

While starting his defense, Kitatta 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.

The case has further been adjourned to the 21st of January 2019.