By Our SPECIAL CRIME REPORTER
The mandate of the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions is to institute criminal proceedings against any person or authority in any court with competent jurisdiction other than a court martial. The mission of the office is to handle and prosecute criminal cases in a just, efficient and effective manner. This is towards the vision of “a crime free society”.
During 2021, the office prosecuted thousands of criminal cases in the courts of law.
However, this website’s interest is in the Public Interest Cases that the office successfully prosecuted.
UGANDA VERSUS KAZINDA GEOFFREY AND 3 OTHERS
Kazinda Geoffrey, Principal Accountant with the Office of the Prime Minister, Okello Wilbert, Principal Systems Analyst with the Accountant General, Mugisha David and Atwine Bright Senior Economist and Senior Accountant respectively at the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development were indicted by the Office of the DPP with 33 counts of forgery, 6 counts of abuse of office and 3 counts of conspiracy to commit felonies.
It was alleged by the Office of the DPP that in 2008, the Government of Uganda and its Development Partners entered into a joint financing agreement concerning budget support to the Peace, Recovery and Development Plan (PRDP) for 2 Northern Uganda. In the financial year 2011/2012 the Development Partners made various financial contributions towards the PRDP.
The Irish Government contributed 4,000,000 Euros, the Danish Government DKK 5,000,000 and the Swedish Government Kroner 16,000,000.
The funds were banked in the PRDP Account in Bank of Uganda. Thereafter, funds to the tune of Ug. Shs. 19 billion were wrongly and irregularly transferred from the PRDP Account to the Crisis Management Account of the Office of the Prime Minister also at Bank of Uganda by Okello Wilbert, with the assistance of Mugisha David, Atwine Bright, and Takwenda Amon (deceased).
The money was then spent on various fraudulent payments with the active involvement of Kazinda Geoffrey. The payments were made using security papers containing forgeries and were made for no goods or services rendered. The money was wired to several accounts of food suppliers and officials who returned it to Geoffrey Kazinda, on his instructions.
The matter was prosecuted by the office in the Anti–Corruption Court before Justice Margaret Tibulya.
The court convicted Kazinda Geoffrey on 33 counts of forgery and 3 counts of conspiracy to commit felonies. He was sentenced to 25 years’ imprisonment on each count of forgery, and 10 years’ imprisonment on each count of criminal conspiracy. He was also ordered to pay compensation of Ug. Shs. 19,171,476,505 to the Government.
Wilbert Okello was also convicted by the court on all the counts of abuse of office and conspiracy to defraud. He was sentenced to a fine of Ug. Shs. 18 million and in default 3 years’ imprisonment.
Mugisha David and Atwine Bright were acquitted.
Prosecuted by Jane Frances Abodo – DPP, Vincent Wagona – Deputy DPP, Josephine Namatovu – Assistant DPP, Edward Muhumuza – Chief State Attorney and Tom Walugembe – Senior State Attorney.
UGANDA VERSUS CAPTAIN BUMALI AND 2 OTHERS
This was a matter where a UPDF Captain, Bumali Mangeni working with other accomplices; Duncan Lumu and Andrew Kisitu kidnapped businessman Daniel Weldu Michael from Kololo–Kampala, and robbed him of a Toyota Prado, $18,000, wrist watch, 2 mobile phones, passport, money transfer forms, cheque leaf and personal documents valued at Ug. Shs. 200,000,000 at Jinja.
The thugs then sedated him and drove him to Kenya where they shot him dead and set his body ablaze before driving off with his vehicle, which they sold in the DRC.
The Office of the DPP (ODPP) indicted them for kidnap with intent to murder, murder and aggravated robbery and prosecuted them in the High Court presided by Justice Flavia Anglin who found all the three accused persons guilty of each of the offences. They were each sentenced to 50 years’ imprisonment for Kidnap with intent to murder, 30 years’ imprisonment for Aggravated robbery and 50 years’ imprisonment for murder, to run concurrently. In addition, each convict was ordered to severally and jointly pay compensation to the tune of Ug. Shs. 200,000,000 to the family of the deceased.
Prosecuted by Jonathan Muwaganya – Chief State Attorney
UGANDA VERSUS MPAGI DIDAS ALIAS BAKULU
In 2019, the Office of the DPP indicted Mpagi Didas with 6 counts of Aggravated trafficking in children and 6 counts of Aggravated defilement.
It was alleged that between 2017 and 2019, Mpagi Didas received and harboured 6 children at Real Infant Primary School in Wakiso District where he sexually exploited them in his capacity as Headmaster of the school. He had promised them scholarships for their education and child welfare and admitted them to the boarding section. He threatened not to assist the children if they did not comply with his exploitative demands.
The matter was prosecuted by the office in the High Court presided by Justice David Wangutusi culminating into his conviction of all the charges. He was sentenced to imprisonment for the remainder of his natural life in respect of each count.
Prosecuted by Joseph Kyomuhendo – Chief State Attorney with support from Tyler Dunman, Special Counsel to the DPP from the Human Trafficking Institute and the International Justice Mission.
UGANDA VERSUS CORPORAL SSALI
Corporal Ssali was indicted for murder by the Office of the DPP. It was alleged that on 24/2/2019, Hon. Nantaba Idah, State Minister for Communication Technology and National Guidance then reported to the Police at Naggalama Police Station that she suspected that she was being trailed by a man on a motorcycle in Nagojje Trading Centre in Mukono District. The Police pursued the rider and arrested him. The rider introduced himself as Sebulime Ronald and said he was going to visit his children at school. Sebulime was handcuffed and put inside a Police Patrol vehicle. Corporal Ssali ordered him out of the vehicle and told him he was going to kill him. Sebulime came out of the vehicle. Corporal Ssali then cocked his gun and shot Sebulime Ronald killing him.
While the matter was being prosecuted by the Office of the DPP in the High Court before Justice Henry I. Kaweesa, and after leading some witnesses, Corporal Ssali David opted for a plea bargain resulting in his conviction and custodial sentence of 20 years.
Prosecuted by Aisha Naluzze Batala – Assistant DPP.