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Special Reports

How DPP Sent Nigerian & South Sudanese Fraudsters, Minister, MUK Deputy Registrar To Jail

“2021 HIGH PROFILE PUBLIC INTEREST CASES: Part II)

By our Crime Reporter

SPECIAL REPORT

Malong in Court

 

UGANDA VERSUS JOACHIM UGUOCHUKWU AND 4 OTHERS

 

The Office of the DPP indicted Joachim Uguochukwu and 4 others with 2 counts of kidnap with intent to obtain a ransom and 2 counts of kidnap with intent to confine a person in 2014.

 

It was alleged that between July and August 2013, Joachim Uguochukwu lured an American engineer and an Australian businessman into Uganda, confined them in a house in Seguku and demanded for a ransom of USD 150,000. Later, 10,000 Australian Dollars was paid and the Australian businessman was released. The Police invaded the house and rescued the American.

 

The matter was prosecuted by the Office of the DPP in the International Division of the High Court before Justice Lydia Mugambe who convicted Joachim Uguochukwo as indicted. He was sentenced to 17 years’ imprisonment and is to be deported to Nigeria upon serving his sentence.

Prosecuted by Rachel Bikhole – Assistant DPP and Marion Ben Bella – State Attorney

 

UGANDA VERSUS HON. HERBERT KABAFUNZAKI

Kabafunzaki after conviction

 

Hon. Herbert Kabafunzaki was indicted by the Office of the DPP for soliciting and receiving a bribe under the Anti–Corruption Act.

 

It was alleged that between 6th and 8th April 2017, Hon. Herbert Kabafunzaki directly solicited and accepted a bribe of Ug. Shs. 5 million from Hamid Muhammed, the chairperson of Aya Group of Companies as an inducement to clear him of sexual abuse allegations by his former employee, Jamila Opondo.

 

The matter was prosecuted by the Office of the DPP in the Anti–Corruption Court before Justice Margaret Tibulya.

 

Hon. Herbert Kabafunzaki was convicted as indicted, in absentia. He was sentenced to a fine of Ug. Shs. 5 million for each count and in default, 3 years’ imprisonment for each count, to be served concurrently.

Prosecuted by Barbara Kawuma – Assistant DPP and Maxim Elizooba – Chief State Attorney.

 

UGANDA VERSUS MUYINGO IBRAHIM AND 9 OTHERS

 

On the 7th August 2019, the deceased Kamada Kimbugwe was assaulted by a group of people over a land dispute. He was subsequently set upon the ground and cut down with a panga suffering grievous head injuries that resulted in his demise.

 

The accused persons arrested by the Police and indicted by the Office of the DPP over this gruesome murder included Muyingo Ibrahim, LC1 Chairperson–Minana Galabi Mityana District, Kalumba John, Rev. Fr Muduse Lawrence, Kulumba John Junior, Nankabirwa Jane Kulumba, Kasule John Baptista, Kayongo Fred, Ssewakiryanga Eriyasafu, Musisi Constantino Kwiba, Mutumba Livingstone and Magala Willy.

 

Prosecution of the matter by the Office of the DPP in the High Court presided by Justice J. W. Kwesiga led to the conviction of Muyingo Ibrahim, Ssewakiryanga Eriyasafu, Musisi Constantino Kwiba and Magala Willy of murder. They were sentenced to life imprisonment.

 

Prosecuted by Margaret Nakigudde Kato – Assistant DPP, Charles Bwiso – Chief State Attorney and Lillian Nandawula – State Attorney

 

UGANDA VERSUS MALONG LAWRENCE AND 2 OTHERS

 

Malong Lawrence, a South Sudanese national, Mike Lota, a Congolese national and Gavana Zhikusoka, a Ugandan were indicted by the Office of the DPP for obtaining money by false pretences, conspiracy to commit a felony (2 counts), uttering false documents (five counts) and money laundering.

 

Several individuals across Africa and Asia were involved in a gold scam to the tune of 1.092.000USD. The complainants, Wagnew Dessie and Adebe of Ethiopian origin based and working in South Africa got into a working relationship with Malong, a South Sudanese National mostly resident in Uganda.

 

He convinced them to come to Uganda and invest in the gold business. He introduced them to Congolese representatives of gold owners including Mike Lota and other Ugandan counterparts including Gavana Zhikusoka.

 

This sparked off a series of incredible transactions traversing Dubai, Nairobi, Hong Kong, Brussels and Zambia in the hope of concluding the transaction. Upon realizing that they had been duped, the complainants reported a case in Nairobi first and then Uganda.

 

The accused were prosecuted by the ODPP in the Anti–Corruption Division of the High Court before Justice Lawrence Gidudu.

 

The court convicted the trio of obtaining 1.092.000 USD by false pretences, conspiracy to defraud the two Ethiopian nationals and uttering false documents (three counts).

 

Malong was sentenced to 3 years’ imprisonment for obtaining money by false pretences, 2 years’ imprisonment for conspiracy to commit a felony and 1–year imprisonment for uttering false documents. Lota was sentenced to 2 years’ imprisonment for obtaining money by false pretences, 1–year imprisonment for conspiracy to commit a felony and 1–year imprisonment for uttering false documents.

 

Zhikusooka was sentenced to 2 years’ imprisonment for obtaining money by false pretences, 1–year imprisonment for conspiracy to commit a felony and 2 years’ imprisonment for uttering false documents. The sentences are to run concurrently. In addition, a compensation order of USD 1,092,000 was made.

They trio were however acquitted on the count of money laundering and two counts of uttering false documents.

Prosecuted by Marion Acio – Chief State Attorney and Nicholas Kawooya – State Attorney.

 

UGANDA VERSUS ETUUSA MARGARET

Margaret-Etuusa in court

Ms. Etuusa Margaret, Deputy Academic Registrar in charge of Ceremonies at Makerere University was indicted with 4 counts of abuse of office.

 

It was alleged by the Office of the DPP that the accused contracted four service providers for different services in total disregard of the public procurement laws, regulations and procedures. The services were neither solicited nor approved by the university and yet the accused issued the illegal service providers with award letters.

 

The case was prosecuted by the Office of the DPP in the Anti–Corruption Division of the High Court before Justice Margaret Tibulya.

 

In its judgment, the High Court found that the accused had acted arbitrarily in all four instances of awarding the said contracts and in doing so prejudiced her employer by portraying the university as disorganized and greedy. It went on to find that the accused had abused her office by side stepping the Ceremonies and Contracts Committee and hijacking the award of the contracts using her office as the Deputy Academic Registrar in charge of Ceremonies.

 

The accused was accordingly convicted on all four counts of abuse of office. She was sentenced to pay a fine of Ug. Shs. 4 million in respect of all counts or serve an imprisonment sentence of 2 years in respect of each count to run concurrently. She was additionally barred from holding public office for 10 years.

Prosecuted by Josephine Namatovu – Assistant DPP

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