Uganda: Court Orders Medical Tests for Suspects in Magara Murder

14 December 2018

Kampala — The High Court in Kampala has ordered that the eight people accused of killing Suzan Magara be allowed private medical examination and treatment at their own cost to verify the alleged torture by security officers.

"The Commissioner General of Prisons is here by directed to allow personal doctors of the accused persons to go to their places of detention; from where the doctors will carry out medical examinations to ascertain whether it is true that they were tortured before being arraigned in courts of law for charging," High Court judge Jane Francis Abodo ordered.

The judge made the orders yesterday following the claims by he accused that they were tortured by security agencies during detention in order to extract confessions from them.

The suspects are: Imam of Usafi Mosque Mahad Kasalita, Yusuf Lubega, 32, a boda boda rider, Hussein Wasswa,22, a hawker, Muzamiru Ssali,27, boda boda rider , Hajara Nakandi,35, a teacher.

Others are; Abubaker Kyewolwa, 30, a businessman, Hassan Kato Miiro, 22, and Ismail Bukenya a businessman and Musa Abbas Buvumbo, 23.

Their lawyer Isaac Ssemakadde appealed to the High Court after their application for private medical examination had been rejected by Buganda Road magistrate Robert Mukanza.

The state prosecutor, Ms Harriet Adom, had asked the High Court to dismiss the application saying the first time the suspects appeared in court in May, 2018, none of them said he had been tortured.

"If it was true that the suspects were tortured, they would have petitioned the Uganda Human Rights Commission since they had not obtained justice at the lower court as they allege," Ms Adom submitted.

The deceased Magara, then 28, was a cashier of Bwendero Diary company. She was kidnapped on Kabaka Anjagala Road in Mengo in January 2018 and held captive for about three weeks as kidnappers demanded a ransom from her parents.

The parents negotiated with the kidnappers to set her free upon raising Shs700m. The kidnappers took the money but also killed her.

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