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Museveni responds to claims of gov’t plan to shield Rukutana from prosecution

President Yoweri Museveni has spoken out on reports that his government plans to shield junior labour minister Mwesigwa Rukutana from prosecution.

Ntungamo Chief Magistrate court has remanded state minister for labour Mwesigwa Rukutana for one more week over attempted murder charges.

The Rushenyi County MP will be remanded until September 15, when he will return for the hearing of his bail application.

In a statement issued hours after Rukutana, Museveni said hinted on why police denied his minister bond, and was optimistic prosecution would block his bail application.

“In the case of the Rukutanas, the Police did not give Police bond because, according to the Police, the evidence is clear
and they should go for trial,” said Museveni.

“I hope the DPP will also oppose bail. The image of impunity is not acceptable.”

BACKGROUND

On September 07, Nazifa Namayanja, a Ntungamo Grade One Magistrate, remanded Rukutana until September 08.

Namayanja charged Rukutana with attempted murder, assault occasioning actual bodily harm, threatening violence, and malicious damage to property.

Prosecution alleges that Mwesigwa Rukutana and others, on September 05, 2020, while at Kagugu Village in Ntungamo District, unlawfully attempted to cause the death of Daniel Rweburingi contrary to section 204(a) of the Penal Code Act.

His bodyguards: Police Constable (PC) No. 46613 Paul Agec, No. 62477 PC Faizo Kazoora, and RA 215020L/CPL John Bosco Okello; and driver Napoleon Nuwamanya are also under detention.

Namayanja had told Rukutana she didn’t have the jurisdiction to handle the case.

She thus remanded him for one night, after which he appeared before Chief Magistrate Sarah Kolya.

When he returned to court on September 08, Rukutana, through his legal team, headed by Owen Murangira, Rukutana for bail.

Murangira argued that Rukutana had a known place of abode in Ntungamo, and charges instituted against him were bailable.

He also submitted that the minister had presented substantial sureties in former ICT and National Guidance Minister Jim Muhwezi, Igara East MP Michael Maranga Mawanda and businessman Bob Kabonero.

However, prosecution argued that police was still investigating the matter.

They needed two weeks to complete the investigations, the lead attorney in the case told Chief Magistrate Kolya.

But Murangira challenged the prosecution team’s justification for demanding two weeks to undertake investigations.

In the end, Kolya remanded Rukutana for one week, directing investigating officers to do their work within that time.

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