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Journalists Give Army 48 Hours To Produce Their Men Who Tortured Their Colleagues

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Army officers beating Akena, inset is Robert Ssempala

Journalist under their organization Human Rights Network for Journalists – Uganda (HRNJ-U) have given the army 48 hours to produce their officers who tortured their colleagues.

While addressing the press today at hotel Triangle in Kampala, Robert Ssempala the national coordinator HRNJ-U warned that they have given the army a 48-hour ultimatum to arrest, parade and prosecute their men who tortured journalists.

“They should also give us their names and numbers so that we can monitor them during prosecution. All along they have been telling us that they are going to prosecute the culprits who torture our colleagues, but nothing is done after, this time we want to monitor the whole process to the end ourselves,” Ssempala said.

He added that if the 48-hours elapse without any response from security forces, he is going to mobilise all journalists from all media houses around the country to stop covering all police and army activities in protest.

“We have to protect our lives and our profession now. We want to see the culprits arrested and prosecuted,” Ssempala added.

Ssempala added that they also want the security forces to pay the medical bills of all affected journalist. He wondered why media owners are silent when their staff are being tortured.

“Where are the media owners when their staff/journalists are being tortured? We want them to come out and declare themselves on this by adding their voice and reproving such acts.”

Yesterday, Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) Spokesperson Brig. Richard Karemire released a statement saying that the army was going to arrest and punish the soldiers who molested journalists.

“UPDF wishes to express its displeasure over such behaviour by those individuals, and as a result, the Chief of Defence Forces (CDF) has ordered for their arrest and punishment,” Karemire’s letter read in part.

Ssempala says this is the same song they have been singing without visible actions every time journalists are tortured, that is why as HRNJ-U, they want to monitor the whole process from arrest to prosecution and detention.

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CRIME

Three Killed In Mukono Robbery Shoot-Out

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Three suspected robbers have been killed in a shoot-out with security guards at Biyinzika Poultry farm in Mukono District, the Grapevine has learnt.

About 10 men armed with one riffle raided Biyinzika Poultry farm at on 16th December 2018 at about 0200 hours and attempted to steal chicken.

In the process of the robbery, there was exchange of fire with the guards at the farm hence killing three suspected robbers. One has been identified as James Adrey of Ngora District.

The Spokesperson Kampala Metropolitan Police Luke Owoyesigyire said that other two bodies have not been identified and were therefore taken to Mulago National Referral Hospital for postmortem.

“We also recovered chicken in sacks at the scene of crime and the hunt is still on for the rest of the team that is suspected to have been involved in this foiled robbery,” he said.

Investigations are ongoing via Mukono Police vide SD 02/16/12/2018.

By Remmy Atugonza

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CRIME

Top Police Officer Defrauds Shs90m From Insurance Company

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Tom Mubiru, a Police officer Number RA 21145 SGT together with city businesswoman Cissy Ndagano have been charged with obtaining money by false pretense. The two were charged before Buganda Road grade one Magistrate Robert Mukanza for fraudulently obtaining over shs90m from Jubilee Assurance Company.

The state alleges that on 16th May 2018, Mubiru and Ndagano went to Jubilee Life Assurance Company offices in Kampala with intent to obtain UGX 52,739535 from the insurance firm fraudulently.

They falsely pretended that Mr. Geoffrey Ssebitosi, who had insured his life died, by the time they discovered that Ssebitosi was not dead, Mubiru and Ndagano had already obtained money.

The state alleges that on 26th of January 2018 at ICEA Life offices in Kampala, the duo defrauded UGX 2,000,000 from Insurance Company of East Africa by falsely claiming that Godfrey Ssebitosi had died.

Both were also charged with giving false information to a person employed in the public service. The state alleges that between July 2018 and November 2018 at CID headquarters Kibuli Kampala, the accused gave false information to a public officer employed by Uganda Police Force which was false when they alleged that Sebitosi was dead. They were charged VID:CID HQTRS 847 2018. It reveals that accused with knowledge lie the police.

By Jamil Lutakome

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CRIME

Katushabe’s Lawyers Asked Me For Shs100m To Kill Case – Sebuufu

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Pine car bond tycoon Muhammad Sebuufu has accused the lawyers of the late Donnah Betty Katushabe, whom he is accused of murdering, of asking him for Shs100m to kill the murder case against him.

In his unsworn defense before Judge Angeline Flavia Senoga of the High Court Criminal Division yesterday,  Sebuufu revealed that when he was remanded to Luzira prison,  four people visited him and gave him alternatives of how he can overcome the charges.

“The group was led by Annet Kobusigye who introduced herself as a lawyer to the late Katushabe and also a boss to Peter Tumusiime and another lawyer, a one Amon who is a potential witness against me.  She asked me for Shs100m to settle the entire case by convincing her lawyers not to come to Court since Katushabe was already dead and no one was going to follow up the case,” Sebuufu revealed.

His lawyer Caleb Alaka asked him to tell Court proof that Kobusigye and other lawyers came to see him in Luzira prison.  Sebuufu told court that Kobusigye wrote in the prison’s visitors’ book indicating her telephone number and the person she had gone to see (Sebuufu).  He further revealed that he has many witnesses who are ready to come to Court and pin Kobusigye including prison officers who recorded her identity in the visitor’s book. He said that his long outstanding friend Livingstone Jjaggwe who works in Equity bank is also available to testify against Kobusigye because he is the one who introduced them to him in Luzira prison.  Alaka asked him to tell court whether he gave Kobusigye the bribe she asked for. Sebuufu said that he refused to give her the bribe because he was confident that he would win this case in Courts of law since he was innocent.  He said he had told Kobusigye to go back and prepare her witnesses to testify against him because they just want him to rot in Luzira prison yet they know the right people who killed Katushabe.

 

He added that he knew Tumusiime very well because he is the one who introduced Katushabe to him when she wanted to buy the vehicle.  He said Tumusiime even asked him for Shs1million as commission from the Shs17million Katushabe was paying for the car.

He further revealed that he thinks Tumusiime got annoyed because he was not given his Shs1million commission from the first payment that Katushabe made while paying for the car. Sebuufu said that he did not pay Tumusiime because by the time the money was paid, he was not around, he promised to pay Tumusiime from the last installment. He added that Tumusiime was also his former employee who  managed his computer systems but he fired him after he failed to deliver. Sebuufu testified that he was surprised when Kobusigye told him that Tumusiime was a lawyer.

“This is the reason why Tumusiime came to Court and testified against me,” Sebuufu said. His lawyer Alaka applied for a Court order against prison authorities to produce their visitor’s book where Kobusigye wrote when she visited Sebuufu. Justice Ssenoga promised to make her ruling on Alaka’s application in the next hearing.  Sebuufu further denied knowing his seven co- accused saying he got to know them in Court. He said co-accused Steven Lwanga was just a special hire driver at Nkurumah Road but not his friend.

He told court that he hired Lwanga to drive Katushabe who was badly beaten by a mob near his car bond to take her to Central Police Station (CPS), this was after the police failed to rescue her. Alaka asked him tell court why people were beating Katushabe and he said that he heard people saying that Katushabe was a car robber and she had been stealing their cars and conniving with other robbers to kill their friends. He said that Lwanga came back with Katushabe in his hire special car and told Ssebuufu that he was told to make a statement telling who had beaten the deceased. He said Lwanga refused to make a statement and it’s the reason as to why he returned Katushabe in the car. Ssebuufu said that he called CPS OC Mugabi and informed him on what was happening at Pine because people had turned against him claiming that he was protecting the thief. He said Mugabi came with a police patrol car full of policemen and drove Katushabe to CPS, only to be informed later in the evening by Mugabi that Katushabe had died. He said that he called Aaron Baguma the former DPC CPS police to confirm whether Katushabe was dead since he had also reported to him the mob at Pine earlier. He said that Baguma told him that he was not aware of the matter. He also said that when he went to CPS to confirm the death, one of the police officers by the name Namugenyi who was his friend told him to make a statement on the death of Katushabe. He said that he made a statement and after he was detained.  Sebuufu further denied that Katushabe was murdered at his car bond. He said she was murdered in a car bond on plot 6 Nkurumah Road which was owned by Kiwanuka Damage who is still on the run in South Africa.  He said that he runs his car bond on plot 5 and 6 and Sudhir Ruparealia is his landlord.  He admits that he sold a vehicle to Katushabe.

Sebuufu is accused together with Phillip Mirambe, Godfrey Kayiza, Lwanga Stephen, Paul Tasingika, Damasen Sentongo and Shaban Oduutui alias Golola of murdering businesswoman Katushabe from the Pine car bond along Lumumba Avenue. It is said Katushabe had bought a Toyota Premio saloon car from Sebuufu but was beaten to death over failing to clear the balance of Shs9million as had been agreed.

 

By Jamil Lutakomese

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