10 January 2019

Uganda: Bobi Wine's Co-Accused in Treason Case, Collapses in Court

Photo: Polycap K. /The Monitor
In the dock. from Left to Right, Eddie Mutwe in red shirt, Bobi wine [wearing red beret] and Arua Municipality Legislator Kassiano Wadri appears at the Magistrate court in Gulu town on Monday December 3 2018.

Gulu — One of the suspects charged with treason over the alleged stoning of President Yoweri Museveni's car during the Arua Municipality by-election chaos last year, Thursday collapsed in at Gulu Magistrate's court.

Ms Caroline Nalubowa, 28, had appeared with 31 of her co-accused including Kyaddondo East Member of Parliament (MP) Mr Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine and Arua Municipality MP, Mr Kassiano Wadri, before Grade One Magistrate, Mr Isaac Imram Kintu.

Others prominent suspects are Ntungamo Municipality MP, Mr Gerard Karuhanga, Jinja East MP, Mr Paul Mwiru and former Makindye East MP, Mr Mike Mabikke.

The court session begun at 9:40 am with Mr Kintu reading out names of the suspects who turned up in court for the mention of their case.

Ms Nalubowa fainted after standing in the dock for with other suspects for nearly two hours.

She was whisked out of the courtroom by her co-accused who administered first aid on her.

After recuperating, Ms Nalubowa, a businesswoman based in Arua Hill Division, Arua Municipality, said her health has never stabilised since last year, when she was tortured by security operatives who arrested her.

"I was beaten in the neck and the back. Since then, I haven't been able to get proper medication. After that incident, I find it difficult to stand for a long period," she said.

Earlier, the suspects' defence lawyers led by Mr Henry Kilama, reminded court that their prayers in the previous court sessions last year involving an order meant to produce two police officers from Gulu District and Arua District had not been respected.

According to Mr Kilama, Mr Yunus Ndiwalana who was handling the case before his transfer had ordered that both the officers in charge of criminal investigations from Gulu and Arua appear in court and explain why the suspects' property is still in police custody.

He said that the police have in their possession four vehicles (a Toyota Tundra, a Toyota Land Cruiser, a Toyota Klugger and a grader] as well as several phones, an Ipad and cash worth millions of shillings, which were confiscated on August 13, 2018 from the suspects.

Mr Kilama asked court to order an unconditional release of the property arguing that some of the confiscated items are helpful in the suspects' daily lives.

But the State Prosecutor, Mr Julius Ochieng argued that some of the confiscated items are crucial exhibits for investigators.

The case was adjourned to March 14, 2019.

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