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.

Troubled, jailed Kantinti sent back to Luzira for another 6 months

By Sania Babirye

Troubled former Forum Democratic change Kyadongo East MP Apollo Kantinti troubles seems to never end.

Today, Katinti has been committed to Luzira prison to serve another six months for failing to pay 108 million shillings to his political rival NRMs Sitende Ssebalu in legal costs.

The money rose out of an election petition filed by Sitende challenging Kantinti’s victory which Sebalu won after court nullified Kantinti’s victory and ordered for fresh elections which was won by the now local musician turned politician Hon.Robert Kyagulanyi Sentamu also known as Bobiwine.

Kantinti who is already serving a six month sentence in Luzira prison for failing to pay a 260 out of the 300 million loan to Standard Chartered bank was brought in court today, after Ssebalu after knowing his predicament also asked court for a warrant of arrest to have him settle his debt.

And as a result, Kantinti who has already spent 10 days in Luzira prison was arrested by court bailiffs led by Moses Kirunda and arraigned before high court deputy registrar Flavia Naboakooza.

However when the judge asked him if he was ready to clear Ssebalu’s debt, the troubled former legislator instead chose another six months in Luzira prison saying he was not in position to pay Ssebalu the said debt.

And as a result, the judge sent him to Luzira prison to serve another six month and ordered Ssebalu to do his duty of paying 3000 shillings to Luzira prison in feeding him.

Kantinti was meant to clear the bank within which he acquired in 2016 in 50 installments in a period of four years which he did default on but has however told court that he is willing to pay the said loan and was in talk with the bank to negotiate on the terms of payments.

But according to court documents he started defaulting on the bank loan in 2017 which forced court to issue a warrant of arrest for him in May this year before he was arrested and committed at Luzira Limits on the 27th of last month.

In April 2017, the court of appeal three justices led by Richard Butera, Cheborion Balishaki and Paul Mugamba unanimously upheld the high court decision ruling by justice Henry Kaweesa that had had nullified Kantinti’s victory as Kyadongo East MP on grounds that there was indeed various electoral Mal-practices including non compliance with electoral laws by the Electoral commission while conducting the said election which affected the results in a substantial manner.

According to the justices, Kantinti’s win could not be ascertained since results from mine polling stations were not tallied in the final tally yet over 5000 voters were disenfranchised.

Refugee asks court to remand him to Luzira

By Sania Babirye
A 37 year old Congolese Refuge has thrown court into laughter after he asked court to remand him to Luzira prison on charges of intentionally destroying a glass wall belonging to the East African Development Bank in Nakasero.

Matakala Chris also known as Abel Kawalya a resident of Kiwatule was arraigned before Buganda road court grade one magistrate Gladys Kamasanyu and had the charge red to him.

He instantly accepted the said charge but informed court that he was forced to destroy the bank glass wall because of his missing papers that police had confiscated from him.

He however did not give court any chance to asks him if he should be given a non custodial sentence for not wasting courts time by accepting the charge and asked court that he wanted to be sent on remand at Luzira prison until police returned his mysterious documents.

This forced grade one magistrate Gladys Kamasanyu to wonder if Matakala was of sound mine since he was talking like he was mad.

He allegedly committed the offense on the 25th of this month .

Bodaboda thieves remanded to Luzira

By Sania Babirye

The high court in Kampala remanded to Luzira prison two people who are said to have been using a chloroform to robe motorcycles commonly known as bodabodas.

These culprits are Joweria Kaweesi and Joseph Luswata.

They were remanded until the 27th of this month after High Court Judge Elizabeth Kabanda charged them with aggravated robbery but denied the charges.

Prosecution states that Joweria Kaweesi, Joseph Luswata and others still at large on the 18th of February 2016 at Mawanga zone Buziga makindye division in Kampala the two arrested robbing a motorbike from a one Lawrence Sekamatte using chloroform.

These are said to have been spraying their victims with the said dangerous chemical before taking off with their motorcycles valued at 3million Uganda shillings.

Meanwhile prosecution informed court that investigations into the matter are still ongoing.

Defiler sent to Luzira

By Sania Babirye

A 20year old youth who defiled a six year old girl has been charged and remanded to Luzira prison.

The suspect is identified as Patrick Kalule. He appeared before High Court Judge Elizabeth Kabanda and was charged with aggravated defilement.

He has however denied the charges and remanded until the 28th of this month when hearing of his case is expected to begin.

Prosecution states that Kalule on September 4th 2017 at Kiwanga village in Wakiso district performed a sexual act with a 6year old girl who was apparently his neighbor’s child .

Two women found fighting have been sent to jail

By Sania Babirye

Two women who were found fighting each other in public have been charged and remanded to Luzira prison.

The two Ladies have been identified as 33 year old Lydia Nalwanga and a 27 year old Tanzanian national Peace Nuwahereza.

The women who are residents of Kikaaya in Kawempe division Kampala district are also neighbors and they were apparently fighting for unknown reasons.

They appeared before city hall court grade one magistrate Valerian Tuhimbise and charged them with the offense of affray.

They however, denied the offense and have consequently been remanded until tomorrow the 18th of April for their bail applications.

Prosecution states that the two ladies on the 19th of March 2019 at Kikaaya ‘A’ zone Kawempe division in Kampala took part in a fight in a public place.

Teacher sent to jail for defiling a student

By Sania Babirye

A male secondary teacher has been remanded to Luzira prison for allegedly defiling a 15 year female student.

The suspect is identified as Patrick Kyasanku a secondary teacher at Busukuma Secondary school in Wakiso district.

He appeared before Kampala High court judge Flavia Agelin Senoga who charged him with aggravated defilement.

He however pleaded not guilty and was remanded until the 15th of May when hearing of his case is expected to begin.

Prosecution led by Annet Namatovu states that between the months of April and May 2016 at Kiwenda -Busukuma in Wakiso district, Kyasanku defiled a 15 year old girl who was one of his students.

IGG expresses skepticism on new virtual courts

By Sania Babirye
The inspectorate of government Irene Mulyagonja has expressed skepticism in the the newly launched video conferencing system that was introduced by the judiciary on Monday this week.

The system was launched by the chief Justice Bart Katureebe and will see prisoners tried at Luzira prison without necessarily being present in a courtroom through an on screen video.

The trial jugde or magistrate will hold court sessions while at Buganda road court while being linked to suspects in Luzira prison .

However the IGG says that if not properly monitored, the technology will be used to abet corruption between judges and prison officials.

She says that the removal of the interface between the courts and the prisoner which will be left at the mercy of the prison officers to ensure that the suspects appear on the screens.

She said this while launching a corruption report by Legal aids Service provider’s network at Hotel African in Kampala.

Mulyagonja says that a clear monitoring system should be set at Luzira prison to see that all prisons gain equally in the system so that not only those who can pay bribes to prison officials and judges can have their cases listed.

She says that there is away the prisons carry out case lists which is unjust and affects some suspects by taking long to be produced before a judge or some fail to appear and with such a new technology if not monitored by the judiciary , many will be denied justice .

She also wants the judiciary to set up a place where those suspects who have complains with the system or are not getting fair justice can go report and have their concerns addressed.

Meanwhile Justice Mulyagonja says increasing salaries of public servants will not end corruption in Uganda unless there is a clear corruption strategy policy in all government bodies.

According to Mulyagonja, no amount of salary can ever be enough because people’s demands and needs increase every single day.

Sylvia Namubiru Mukasa the head of the network says corruption is on the increase in the country, yet nothing much is being done to fight.

According to the report, only the three justice law and order justice sector out of the 17 have customized the anti corruption strategy yet it was put into place seven years ago since its was launched in 2012.

These include the Uganda Human Rights commission, the Judiciary and the Uganda police.

It was set to enable the law and justice sectors of government to put in place mechanism to eliminate corruption in the country.

Namubiru says this gap could be due to lack of funds to set up the the anti corruption strategy.

She says that all the government institutions lack funding to implement the said strategy because there is no legal frame work to make them operationalised.

She says that issues like the chief justice who heads the judiciary having no powers to recruit or punish corrupt officers which powers are vested in the Director of Public prosecution or the IGG leaves him powerless despite having the internal mechanism .

She adds that the Judicial service commission or the police standards unit as administrative units make orders but such orders are not sufficient enough to end corruption.

On the 15th of aprim the Chief Justice, Bart Katureebe, commissioned a video conferencing system to Luzira Maximum Security Prison and Buganda Road court. Justice Katureebe called upon all judges and other stakeholders to see that the system is used to serve its purpose. He said that if fully used by judges to serve its purpose, they will see that the system is enrolled in all courts starting from the smallest (grade one courts) to the highest court (Supreme court).To see the whole system enrolled, this will cost government 12 billion shillings annually .

The facility will be used for the mentioning of criminal cases before they are fixed for trial. Justice Katureebe also operationalised two virtual courts that have been set up within the Luzira upper Prison male and female wings. According to Justice Geoffrey Kiryabwire of the court of appeal judge and also chair of the Judiciary’s technological committee , the facilities are satisfactory.

Justice Kiryabwire revealed that they will be needing 12 billion shillings for the next five years to see that the technology is enrolled in the whole country.

He said that this money will enable them to see that all courts in the country from the magistrate courts to the supreme court are connected to video conferencing.

He however said that right now the funding they are getting from ministry of finance is inadequate to allow their plans since they only received UGX6 billion which is about 50%.

He however said that he is hopeful that government will increase their.

He stated that the program is going to save suspects and Luzira prison officials the burden of coming to court even for short sessions like mentioning of case as it has been the case.

He also said that the public will also stop being inconvenienced through road closing by security personnel as it has been the case when key suspects are being brought to court.

According to Justice Kiryabwire, although proceedings like mentioning of cases takes a little time, however it has been costly in transporting suspects from Luzira prison to court were some of them have in the end escaped from court docks as it was the case in Masaka.

This means that the judge or magistrate will sit at Buganda road and mentions all cases through video conferencing with suspects at Luzira prison.

The lawyers will also have a chance to file their cases through Efilling without necessarily moving to court to file paper work as it has also been the case.

“We have entered the courts of the future in Uganda,” he said, adding: “Uganda is the first country in East Africa to set up courts inside a prison. Judiciary’s strategy is to revolutionize how justice is dispensed…Uganda is the first country in East Africa to set up courts inside a prison.”

“We are moving courts from buildings to services that are available to Ugandans who need them. With such a facility, people should be coming to the physical courts only for trials,” said Justice Kiryabwire

Hosted at the National Data Center under the National Information Technology Authority (NITA-U), the high-tech court conference facilities were recently installed both in the Luzira Prison and Buganda Road Chief Magistrates Court in Kampala.

The technology is designed to aid the mentioning of all criminal cases at Buganda Road Court involving accused persons on remand in Luzira Prison before their cases are fixed for trial.

Buganda Road Court will also handle related cases on behalf of the Magistrates Courts of Makindye, Nakawa, Nabweru, Law Development Center (LDC), Kira, City Hall, Nateete/Rubaga, Luzira, Kasangati and the Anti-Corruption Court.

NITA’s Executive Director, James Saaka, said the facility is designed to connect the courts beyond the geographical boundaries to provide faster administration of justice.

He said recordings from all court sessions will be safely kept in the National Backbone Infrastructure at the National Data Center.

The Officer in Charge of Luzira Upper Prison, Moses Sentalo, applauded the move.

“The system will save us the costs involved in the back and forth transportation of prisoners to courts as well as the stress that comes with moving high risk inmates. Imagine, transporting one inmate to court requires five prison officers handling different roles: driver, gunman, orderly, warder and supervisor).”

He said a team of Uganda Prisons staff have been trained to operate the facility and they are ready for the

The facilities will help among other things,

• Lower costs of prisons operations since preliminary stages of cases can be handled online.

• Minimise risks of transporting high profile prisoners as such cases will be handled online in the safety of Luzira Prisons.

• Ease access to information during court sessions since document sharing/storage will be electronic and will be accessed remotely by the concerned parties.

It will also reduce on the case backlog which has also brought about by suspects missing court sessions due to lack of transport.

The prisoner’s right’s will also be protected since they will no longer be chained as it has been while being transported in court.

CJ Katureebe commissions virtual courts

By Sania Babirye

The Chief Justice, Bart Katureebe, has today commissioned a video conferencing system to Luzira Maximum Security Prison and Buganda Road court.

Justice Katureebe has called upon all judges and other stakeholders to see that the system is used to serve its purpose.
He said that if fully used by judges to serve its purpose, they will see that the system is enrolled in all courts starting from the smallest (grade one courts) to the highest court (Supreme court).

To see the whole system enrolled, this will cost government 12 billion shillings annually.The facility will be used for the mentioning of criminal cases before they are fixed for trial.
Justice Katureebe has also operational two virtual courts that have been set up within the Luzira upper Prison male and female wings.

According to Justice Geoffrey Kiryabwire of the court of appeal judge and also chair of the Judiciary’s technological committee , the facilities are satisfactory.

Justice Kiryabwire has also revealed that they will be needing 12 billion shillings for the next five years to see that the technology is enrolled in the whole country.

He says that this money will enable them to see that all courts in the country from the magistrate courts to the supreme court are connected to video conferencing.

He however says that right now the funding they are getting from ministry of finance is inadequate to allow their plans since they only received UGX 6 billion which is about 50%.

He however says that he is hopeful that government will increase their funding but are also happy to start with the little they have to start on their plans.

He says that the program is going to save suspects and Luzira prison officials the burden of coming to court even for short sessions like mentioning of case as it has been the case.

He also says that the public will also stop being inconvenienced through road closing by security personnel as it has been the case when key suspects are being brought to court.

He said that although proceedings like mentioning of cases takes a little time, however it has been costly in transporting suspects from Luzira prison to court were some of them have in the end escaped from court docks as it was the case in Masaka.

This means that the judge or magistrate will sit at Buganda road and mentions all cases through video conferencing with suspects at Luzira prison

The lawyers will also have a chance to file their cases through E filling without necessarily moving to court to file paper work as it has also been the case.

“We have entered the courts of the future in Uganda,” he said, adding: “Uganda is the first country in East Africa to set up courts inside a prison. Judiciary’s strategy is to revolutionalise how justice is dispensed.Uganda is the first country in East Africa to set up courts inside a prison.”

“We are moving courts from buildings to services that are available to Ugandans who need them. With such a facility, people should be coming to the physical courts only for trials,” said Justice Kiryabwire

Hosted at the National Data Center under the National Information Technology Authority (NITA-U), the high-tech court conference facilities were recently installed both in the Luzira Prison and Buganda Road Chief Magistrates Court in Kampala.

The technology is designed to aid the mentioning of all criminal cases at Buganda Road Court involving accused persons on remand in Luzira Prison before their cases are fixed for trial.

Buganda Road Court will also handle related cases on behalf of the Magistrates Courts of Makindye, Nakawa, Nabweru, Law Development Centre (LDC), Kira, City Hall, Nateete/Rubaga, Luzira, Kasangati and the Anti-Corruption Court.

NITA’s Executive Director, James Saaka, said the facility is designed to connect the courts beyond the geographical boundaries to provide faster administration of justice.

He said recordings from all court sessions will be safely kept in the National Backbone Infrastructure at the National Data Centre.

The Officer in Charge of Luzira Upper Prison, Moses Sentalo, applauded the move.

“The system will save us the costs involved in the back and forth transportation of prisoners to courts as well as the stress that comes with moving high risk inmates. Imagine, transporting one inmate to court requires five prison officers handling different roles: driver, gunman, orderly, warder and supervisor).”

He said a team of Uganda Prisons staff have been trained to operate the facility and they are ready for the

The facilities will help among other things,

• Lower costs of prisons operations since preliminary stages of cases can be handled online.

• Minimise risks of transporting high profile prisoners as such cases will be handled online in the safety of Luzira Prisons.

• Ease access to information during court sessions since document sharing/storage will be electronic and will be accessed remotely by the concerned parties.

It will also reduce on the case baklog which has also brought about by suspects missing court sessions due to lack of transport.

The prisoner’s right’s will also be protected since they will no longer be chained as it has been while beong transported in court.

Man sent back to jail for escaping from Luzira

By Sania Babirye

A 35 year old man has been jailed two years for always escaping from lawful custody .

Dan jemba has been sentenced by Buganda road court grade one magistrate Robert Mukanza.

While sentencing him, the magistrate ruled that prosecutions had adduced sufficient evidence to prove that Jemba was not a first time offender and that indeed this was his third time of escaping from Luzira prison after being either charged and remanded, convicted and jailed on different offenses between 2017 and 2018.

The magistrate explained that the convict needed the maximum two year jail sentence as a harsh punishment to deter the would-be offenders since escaping from lawful custody by suspe8 or criminals is currently rampant in the country.