By Markson Omagor
This morning while walking to our labour parade grounds, actually just as I approached the ground, a one Paul, a former Town Clerk Arua Municipal Council but who sleeps in the Sheraton of M/BAY told me, that (names withheld for privacy purposes) a former CAO of (Oyam) had been arrested and brought the previous evening.
This gentleman had been a center of discussion within our circles; three works back, his co-accused had been arrested and brought back to Luzira. When this co-accused appeared back in court, their case was adjourned for two weeks as the sureties for the CAO who had gone AWOL were forced to deposit land tittles within Kampala with a value of over a hundred million (100m) with the court.
We had also been briefed that these sureties were to forfeit their land titles or cause the arrest of the accused. It was our conviction that these sureties must have born on pressure for the gentleman to be arrested.
Now they will go to court for conviction since they jumped bail when they were to report back for sentencing, so we await for that day.
“I fear for those guys because you see they went before the Judge and pleaded guilty and were given one week to report back to court for their conviction and sentencing, instead they jumped bail and fled. The judge we believe must be infuriated.” Paul said.
Then this evening while reading an edition of New Vision, our hopes were finally dashed. The DPP announced that he had taken over all the cases handled by the IGG and therefore there will be no dismissals as a result of the constitutional court ruling.
“ In April 2012, there was a constitutional ruling that rendered the then acting Inspector General of Government (IGG) Raphael Baku incompetent of prosecuting ministers, Sam Kutesa, John Nasasira and Mwesigwa Rukutana because the inspectorate was not fully constituted..
The court ruled that the IGG could not prosecute the three ministers or any one for cases involving abuse of office and corruption and causing financial loss because by acting alone in prosecuting the officials he was breaching the constitution.”
This constitutional court ruling created a lot of anxiety amongst us who were prosecuted under that IGG regime. We actually had hopes that all our convictions were automatically going to be nullified.
More over as previously stated, cases already prosecuted and concluded by the IGG in its present unconstituted form were to stay as they were although the constitutional court remarked it as having been unfortunate! So there goes your justice! Justice in your beloved country! For now am going to look at my Sarah’s and son’s picture that had been smuggled in for me some two weeks back for emotional energy to pull through yet another night in confinement!
13th April, 2012
Odong, my friend, my chief who hosted me in C8 for my first month in prison completed his sentence today and left. I met him accidentally at the property office where I had gone to sign for money for purchase of a few items. The man was dressed in black shoes, black trousers, a black shirt with white spots and a black rain jacket hanging down towards his knees.
He took long to see me in the line; his gaze, I suspected was clouded by expectation. Anxiety of a home so alien, of a family so remote, of a life so unnatural, of a desire for a female comfort unknown for the last seven years! I called out to him, then he heard and saw me. He asked for my telephone number for which I gave. I washed him well in his new life and he in return promised to pray for me to last out my sentence.
I had been parted with Odongo when the near- go- home inmates were shifted from C Block to D Block. Odongo himself belonged to this group but was stayed because he was the R.P ward. Now this departure, I was not willing to witness, an effort to avoid pain that longing pain caused by constant reminders. Reminders that our lives actually belonged to the outside of these metallic gates. But fate brought us rainfall in a torrent introducing us to another phase of prison life. The rainy cold phase where inmates are mostly locked indoors for fear of escape.
The same day had actually witnessed another ‘Gari’, vehicle in English selected inmates were taken to the farm. Now when one wants a proper definition of a prison, it’s got in a farm prison.