Besigye & Mukaaku Face Arrest as Court Issues Warrant Over Incitement Charges

By Our Reporter

KAMPALA – The Buganda Road Magistrates Court has issued a warrant of arrest against Dr. Kiiza Besigye and Rubaga North former Parliamentary Candidate Samuel Lubega Mukaaku. They failed to appear in court for the second time to face trial on charges of inciting violence.

Grade One Magistrate Asuman Muhumuza issued the warrant of arrest following a request by the prosecution. According to the prosecution, on June 14th, 2022, in Kikuubo, Shauriyako Parish, Kampala City, Besigye and Mukaaku made statements inciting violence and damage to property during a protest against the escalating commodity prices.

Initially, they were granted bail and ordered to appear in court as required. However, they were absent during the recent court session. State Attorney Ivan Kyazze informed the court that despite bringing witnesses from far, Besigye and Mukaaku did not show up and have been inconsistent in their appearances, hindering a speedy trial.

Musa Matovu, representing their lawyer Erias Lukwago, explained that their absence in the last sessions was not deliberate. He stated that Besigye and Mukaaku are currently out of the country. He added that the case lost track on February 22, 2023, when the hearing did not proceed due to the Magistrate’s unavailability.

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Matovu requested an adjournment, but Kyazze insisted that court was not provided with the travel itinerary, visa details, and photocopies for Besigye and Mukaaku. Kyazze also mentioned that the lawyers did not seek permission for their clients to travel outside the country and denied allegations of the Magistrate’s indisposition.

In his ruling, Muhumuza agreed with the prosecution, stating that Matovu’s submissions were false. He clarified that in May, Besigye and Mukaaku attended court but missed subsequent sessions. Due to their consistent absence, the court decided to issue a warrant of arrest and criminal summons against each of their sureties.

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