MPs Ssegirinya, Ssewanyana charged over Murder, Sent on remand



Members of Parliament Allan Ssewanyana of Makindye West and Muhammad Ssegirinya for Kawempe North have been remanded to Kitalya prison for allegedly participating in the murder of people in Masaka district.

The two opposition MPs were arraigned before the Masaka Chief Magistrate’s Court after they had appeared at the Masaka Central Police Station to record statements about their alleged participation in the gruesome killings that have engulfed the Masaka sub-region in the recent past.

They were charged with three counts of murder and attempted murder, offenses they allegedly committed on 23rd August this year, at Ssetaala and Ssenya villages located in Kimanya-Kabonera division in Masaka city. 

The two MPs were taken to court amid heavy security deployment and appeared alongside Bruno Wamala and John Mugera who according to prosecution are accomplices in the murders.  

Richard Birivumbuka, the Masaka Resident Chief State Attorney, indicated to the court that the suspects murdered Francis Kizza, Sulaiman Kakooza and Tadeo Kiyimba and attempted to murder Ronald Ssebyato of Ssetaala village in Masaka City. 

According to the charge sheet, the four have been jointly facing similar charges of murder alongside two more suspects; Mike Ssemanda and Jude Muwonge who were earlier charged and remanded to Ssaza prison facility in Masaka. 

According to police, they were arrested after revelations from some of the confessing culprits who pinned them on the murders that have occurred.  

Charles Yeitese, the Masaka Chief Magistrate indicated that given that the suspects are facing a capital offense of murder, his court does not jurisdiction to enter their pleas, thereby sending them to Kitalya prison for  6 months, a period after which suspects on capital offenses can qualify for mandatory bail.

Court, however, granted the suspects permission to return on September 15th this year, to check on the progress of investigations into the offenses.

Erias Lukwago, the lawyer to the two MPs told journalists after the court session that they are going to file an application to the High Court seeking the release of his clients on bail on medical grounds. 

He alleged that his clients are framed by the regime for its political scores, something he says will complicate the pursuit to apprehending the real killers in Masaka.

According to police records, a total of 38 suspects are held in different security detention centers, of which 14 have already been presented before the court of law, in relation to murders that have claimed 26 lives in the district of Masaka and Lwengo, where 9 people are also nursing injuries inflicted on them by machete-wielding assailants.


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