Tumukunde granted a UGX 50M non cash bail

2021 Presidential hopeful sec Lt.Gen.Henry Tumukunde has been granted bail by the High court in Kampala.

The former security minister who has been on remand at Luzira prison since the 18th of March has been released by Justice Wilson Kwesiga after reviewing his earlier tough bail conditions he had issued.

In the review, Justice Kwesiga has now accepted his sureties including his wife Stellah Tumukunde, brother in-law Hannington Karuhanga and family friend Matthew Rukikaire as substantial sureties .

Justice Kwesiga has now ordered that Tumukunde signs a 50 million shillings non cash bail, deposit his passport in court and has also ordered his sureties to execute a non cash bond of 50 million shillings and make sure that he returns to court when needed.

The judge had first ordered Tumukunde to produce at least two serving army officers at his rank or above his rank approved by the chief of defense forces to stand surety for him.

However, Tumukunde filed an application seeking a review of the said conditions saying as a retired soldier who is charged with treason, he was not able to find a serving army officer at his rank or above who would be willing to stand surety for him and that by law, it did not apply to him.

And today, Justice Kwesiga was in agreement with Tumukunde and ruled that given the nature of the offense he is a charged with, no Military officer of his rank or above either retired or not was or is willing to associate with him.

Justice Kwesiga has also ruled that the said bail terms be applied before city hall Magistrate court where Tumukunde is charged with offenses of unlawful possession of firearms and ammunition.

On the 4th of this month, Gen.Tumukunde’s wife petitioned the high court seeking a review of the tough bail conditions that were issued by Justice Kwesiga if he is to be granted bail.

Some of the conditions he challenged included an order that Gen.Tumukunde must at least presents two sureties who are serving army officers at his rank or above his rank with an introduction letter from the chief of Defense forces to stand for him yet he is a retired army officer not subject to military law or otherwise.

Other conditions challenged included; Tumukunde to reconsider re applying for bail 30 days after the country wide ongoing lock down, allow him to represent a duplicate certificate of his residence at plot 12 Kololo hill drive and finally grant him bail pending trial.

According to his Wife Stella Tumukunde, , the said conditions made it practically impossible for Gen.Tumukunde to realize bail and high court should squash them and grant her husband bail immediately pending trial and determination of his case.

She stated that all military officers at Rtd. Gen.Tumukunde’s rank or above his rank are serving in the Government of Uganda either in the UPDF or in other government positions and can not be allowed to stand surety for him on alleged charge of treason.

She further stated that Gen.Tumukunde had already substantial sureties presented to court including herself, his brother in-law Hannington Karuhanga, his friend Mathew Rukikaire that are substantial sureties.

She also challenged the one month extension given to state to complete their investigations after lifting of the ongoing lock down before Gen.Tumukunde re applies for bail claiming that its not certain when the lock down will end and that police is not affected by the lock down since they are among the listed essential service providers who continue to operate their daily duties including the investigations and can access the alleged witnesses even in the ongoing lock down.

She adds that the suspect cannot interfere in any ongoing investigations since the particulars of the alleged offense is clear including the talk show on which he allegedly made the statement, the date and time and the television and police extracted the said video footage.

Through their lawyers of Tumusiime, Kabega and company advocates , Wameeli company advocates, Stella Tumukunde then asked the high court to review the said conditions and immediately grant her husband bail since he is resumed innocent until proved guilty and also the fact that applying for bail is his constitutional right on top of being a retired army officer who is not subject to military law .

On the 14th of April, Justice Wilson Kwesiga declined to grant Tumukunde’s bail application.

He was in agreement with State that completion of their investigations have been affected by the ongoing lock down due to COVID-19 and that if Tumukunde’s is released, he is likely to interfere with the ingoing Investigations.

He however, gave state one month from to complete the said investigations so as to reconsider, Gen.Tumukunde’s bail.

Justice Kwesiga also found Tumukunde’s sureties including his wife Stella Tumukunde, his son, FDCs vice president Salamu Musumba and former army commander Gen.Mugisha Muntu not substantial.

He ordered that Tumukunde provides at least two serving senior Army officers above his rank who have the abilities to prevail over him and compel him to adhere to the bail set conditions including compelling him to report back to court when needed.

Justice Kwesiga explained that in previous instances, the courts of law have been humiliated by granting senior police officers like Gen.Tumukunde bail only for such senior army officers to defy the said bail conditions including reporting back to court yet the sureties that stood for them could not compel them to report back to court.

He then advised state to complete their investigations especially evidence that they think Tumukunde will have influence over if granted bail and also advised the applicant to avail court with substantial suruties that can compel him to return back to court if granted bail.

However, justice Kwesiga did agree with the defense that Tumukunde is of an advanced age of 61 which is an exceptional circumstance for granting of bail despite being charged with a capital offence, has a fixed place of abode and the presumption of innocence until proved guilty among other grounds.

On the 8th of this month, state asked court to deny Tumukunde bail on grounds that he is likely to interfere with the ongoing investigations.

According to an affidavit that was sworn in by the investigating officer SP Richard Mugwisagye, from the CID, Gen.Tumukunde is a former minister of security who might use his influence to interfere with investigations,on top of him being a former director if ISO, commander of the 4th Division of the army in Gulu and recently retired senior army officer.

State further claims that the suspect is charged with a capital offence of treason which upon conviction carries a maximum punishment of death, and that he is likely to abscond from bail if granted to him by court.

The Rtd lt. Gen.filed his bail application on the 20th of March after being remanded to luzira prison on treason charges on the 18th March by city hall court

Prosecution states that on the 5th of March 2020 while appearing on a morning show at one of the local Tv stations in Kamwokya, the Rt. Lt Gen made utterances which were calculated to instigated the Republic of Rwanda to invade Uganda and cause a unlawful change of government.

He also face other 4 counts of unlawful possession of firearms.

Prosecution states that on March 13th 2020 at his office Impala Avenue in Kololo,was found in possession of 2 guns; an Ak47 and a pistol and 34 rounds of ammunitions without a valid firearm licence.

Events promoter Bajjo in trouble over viral Facebook video

By Robert Segawa

Police has said the People Power supporter and music promoter Andrew Mukasa of Bajjo Events will faces treason charges.

Mukasa also known as Bajjo Events was on Saturday arrested by security officers who were dressed in police uniform attached to the Special Forces Command an incident that raised a debate.

However, the police spokesperson, Fred Enanga said the Special Investigations Division of the police is investigating Bajjo over a video in which he was recorded threatening to overthrow President Museveni before the next election in 2021.

According to Fred Enanga, Mukasa aka Bajjo has this morning handed over to special investigation unit Division in Kireka for more investigation on the video’s the accused shared on social media as he threatened to overthrow the elected government before 2021 election.

“The investigation will lead to charges of treason and threatening violence against Mukasa” said Enanga .

In the video that was shared on social media platforms, Bajjo is seen threatening to oust President Museveni’s government before 2021 and warning the army against standing in their way during the oust.

Enanga explained that being a lawfully elected President of Uganda,Museveni enjoys all privileges,adding that it is an offense for anyone to threaten ousting him using force.

“We warn the public against spreading the video’s which is more inciting and harmful to the country.” He added that investigations are ongoing but noted if complete, the file will be sent to the Director of Public Prosecutions for perusal and will appear in courts of law as soon as done.

Arua treason suspect re arrested

By Sania Babirye
One of the suspects charged with Kyadondo East MP Robert Kyagulanyi and 32 others has been re-arrested by security operatives.

Ssenyange Musa ishas been arrested by police immediately after the case being adjourned to the 4th of July by Gulu grade one magistrate Issac Kintu.

He is said to be driver of the grader that was confiscated during the arrest of the suspects in Arua in August 2018.

He was whisked and dragged in a Toyota Premo No.UBE 128F and his were about is still unknown.

Ssenyange had appeared together with all his co accussed including Mike Mabike, Bobi Wine, Gerald Karuhanga, Kasiano Wadri, Francis Zaake and paul Mwiru and others before Gulu Magistrate court for further mentioning of their case..

These have asked court to dismiss the treason charges against them on grounds that they were tortured and hence the charges can not be sustained per the constitution of Uganda.

These argue that once a suspect or an accused person is tortured then charges can not be sustained against them.

These further states that if court does not dismiss or discontinue the charges against them, then the cade should be referred to the constitutional court for further interpretation.

These have also asked court to have their properties that were confiscated by police in Arua as exhibits including Watches, Phones and cars among other items returned to them.

Court has now given state 30 days to make sure that the accuser’s properties are returned to them.

However state says that they are ready with evidence that can sustain the said charges against the accused.

The court will rule on the said matter on the 4th of July 2019.

These are accused of stoning one of President Museveni’s Vehicle on the 15th of August during campaigns in the Arua by elections.

Bobi Wine’s body guard to be charged with treason

By Sania Babirye
Government has finally admitted to have in custody the missing Robert Kyagulanyi’s bodyguard, Eddie Mutwe.
While appearing before high court judge , Justice Musa Sekaana,  the Attorney General’s representative Peter Tusubiira informed court that Eddy Sebuufu also known as Eddie Mutwe is in the arms of the army  but will be soon transported to Gulu high court to be charged with treason.
Mutwe will join the rest of the 34 suspects including Hon.Bobiwine, Paul Mwiru, Francis Zaake among others to be charged in connection with the alleged stoning of presidential motorcade during the  by elections in Arua Municipality to feel the seat that was occupied by the late NRM Ibrahim Abiriga.
On the 30th of August this year, Kampala High court Judge Musa Sekaana issued an order directing the  Chief of Defense forces  Gen. David Muhoozi and the Chieftancy of Military Intelligence (CMI) to unconditionally release Eddy Sebuufu also known as Eddie Mutwe.
On the 28th of this month, following Mutwe’s mysterious disappearance  his lawyer Anthony Kusingura petitioned the high court civil division seeking orders to have him immediately released or produced in a competent court to be formally charged of any crime commited.
Justice  Sekaana accepted and  concluded hearing  a habeas corpus application by   Kusingura who told court that security agencies are holding  his client  in  communicado after arresting   from Ssemakokiro plaza in Kamwokya within Kampala city .
According to  Kusingura, Mutwe is being  held illegally beyond the mandatory 48 hours without being produced in court for formal charging.
Justice Sekaana then  ordered  the CDF and CMI  to produce him in court or unconditionally release him  not later than the 4th of September this year.
The order was issued in the absence of any representative from the CDF or CM to clarify on were Mutwe is being held.
 Mutwe is believed to have been allegedly arrested by security personnel from the military on the the 25th of this month  from Ssemakokiro plaza in Kamwokya a Kampala suburb and taken to unknown detention.

However security operatives first  denied to have him in their detention before finally accepting to have him.

Four people charged with treason apply for bail.

By Sania Babirye

Four people out of the 14 suspects charged with treason following a failed attack on Kabamba and Karama military barracks have applied for the second time to be granted bail by the army court sitting in Makindye pending their trial.

Lt Col Philip Eguma, Kiwanuka Francis, Kibirige Peter and Kibuuka Patrick through their lawyer Fredrick Semwanga the four suspects want to be temporarily released on grounds that bail is their constitutional right, since they are innocent until proven guilty. They also claim to be responsible citizen who will not abscond once granted bail.

Prosecution led by Major Raphael Mugisha has asked the General court martial chairperson Lieutenant General Andrew Gutti to give him ample time for preparation.

The accused were denied bail in September 2015 because they were facing charges related to national security and had no exceptional grounds to justify their need for bail.

In October 2014 one of the suspects Captain John Bosco Lutwama died while on remand in Makindye military police prison.

It’s alleged that the suspects consciously omitted to disclose vital information to the military authorities about the recruitment of people to engage into activities that were prejudice to the security of UPDF.

They are also accused of engaging in preparations to attack Armored Warfare Training School (AWTS) in Mubende district.

They committed the alleged crimes between September 2013 and May 2014 in various districts in Uganda and Nairobi Kenya.

The case has been adjourned to the 19th of April 2017.

Photo Credit: Chimp reports

Besigye vows not to return to court for the treason case mention

By Sania Babirye
Former FDC presidential Candidate Dr. Kiiza Besigye says he will petition the constitutional court seeking orders to halt treason charges against him before the Nakawa court.
This follows failure by the DPP to commit Besigye to the high court for trial since May 2016 when he was arrested and charged with treason . Besigye was charged after a video clip  emerged of him taking oath of Presidency months after the February elections.
Prosecution asked for more time to complete investigation of the case which is still ongoing so that Besigye can be committed for trial. Besigye today appeared before Nakawa chief magistrate Noah Ssajabi and  vowed not to return back to Nakawa court for mention of the same case.The case has been adjourned to the 27th of February for further mention.