22 November 2012

Uganda: Brig. Tumukunde Has Case to Answer Says Court

The General Court Martial has ruled that former intelligence chief Brig. Henry Tumukunde has a case to answer in relation to charges of spreading harmful propaganda and conduct prejudicial to good order and discipline.

Tumukunde, who appeared before the military court presided over by Brig. Fred Tolit, on Wednesday lost his temper when he was informed that the state had established a case against him that requires him to defend himself.

The former spy chief through his lawyers, Oscar Kambona and Emmanuel Twarebireho, had filed a no-case-to-answer submission and asked court to dismiss the case without putting him on defence.

They argued that there is no substantial evidence against Tumukunde.

The state alleges that Tumukunde committed the crimes when he appeared on a talk-show on Radio One in Kampala in 2005.

Tumukunde engaged Tolit in a brief exchange and said he was not surprised by the ruling on his submission because he understands the "system" well.

He vowed not to defend himself if he is put on the stand. "I will go to court but I will not say anything because I don't have more witnesses and defence lawyers," Tumukunde said.

"I have suffered a lot for the 'system' and this can be demonstrated by the bullet wounds on my body," he added.

Tolit reminded Tumukunde that he is an army officer, who has held a number of positions in the defence forces, and he was bound to make mistakes if he continues to act out of anger.

Tumukunde said he has contributed a lot to the NRM regime and that he did not deserve to be treated that way. "I will not get justice. This has been seen in the way the case has been handled," he added.

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