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Court Issues Arrest Warrant for Deputy Kampala RCC

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Ntege is wanted for obstructing police from arresting Engineer, Robert Kakiiza who was wanted in connection to the infamous LC bicycle scam. In her submission to court this morning, Cingtho explained that they served the RCC four criminal summonses to appear and plead to the charges of obstructing Police Detectives from arresting Engineer Kakiiza but she didn’t show up.
27 Feb 2020 14:09
Counsel Francis Habomugisha represents the Deputy RCC Hawa Ntege
Buganda Road Magistrate’s Court has issued an arrest warrant against the Kampala Deputy Resident City Commissioner, Hajjat Hawa Ndege. The Buganda Road Court Grade one Magistrate, Asuman Muhumuza issued the warrant of arrest on Thursday on request from State Prosecutor, Patricia Cingtho.

Ndege is wanted for obstructing police from arresting Engineer, Robert Kakiiza who was wanted in connection to the infamous LC bicycle scam. In her submission to court this morning, Cingtho explained that they served the RCC four criminal summonses to appear and plead to the charges of obstructing Police Detectives from arresting Engineer Kakiiza but she didn’t show up.  

Ndege’s lawyer, Francis Habomugisha pleaded with court in vain to extend the summonses. He also claims that the file regarding his client had clandestinely returned to Buganda Road Court from the Constitutional Court, adding his client was aware of today's proceedings.    

In his ruling, the Buganda Road Court Grade one Magistrate, Asuman Muhumuza issued the arrest warrant to compel the accused to appear before court on March 5th, 2020 for plea taking.



Background to the Matter


Prosecution alleges that on April 25th 2019 while at Embassy house building on Parliament Avenue in Kampala District, Ndege knowingly obstructed Detective Assistant Inspector of Police Godfrey Onume and Sergeant, Francis Tayebwa from executing the arrest of Engineer Kakiiza following his disappearance after being charged with corruption.

The charges are connected to the theft of Shillings 4.2 billion meant for the procurement of 70,000 bicycles by the Local Government Ministry for Local Council and Parish chairperson ahead of the 2011 General Elections. 

Kakiiza is said to have messed up the procurement together with other officials from the Local Government Ministry leading to a financial loss of Shillings 4.2 billion when the contracted Ammam Industrial Tools   and Equipment Limited –AITEL, a sham company to handle Procurement. 

   

His co-accused included John Muhanguzi Kashaka, the former Permanent Secretary Local Government, Henry Bamutura, the former Principal Accountant, Timothy Musherure, a Consultant, Samuel Emorut Erongot, the former Commissioner in Charge of Policy and Planning, Adam Aluma and the late Robert Tumwebaze.     

The five were charged and convicted to serve sentences ranging from one to ten years with the exception of Bamutura who was acquitted.  However, Engineer Kakiiza went into hiding to the extent that Directorate of Public Prosecution scrapped his name from the charge sheet after it was reported that he had died.

He was arrested last year with the help of the State House Anti-Corruption Unit and Intelligence, which closely monitored his movement. It is alleged that the State House Anti-Corruption Unit received information that Kakiiza was alive and in constant communication with Ndege.

The State House Anti-Corruption Unit led by Lt.   Col. Edith Nakalema reportedly contacted Ndege to surrender Engineer Kakiiza to law enforcement to answer charges against him. She however, reportedly claimed that the suspect had left her office and return on April 29th, 2019 despite the fact he was still in her office.     

This prompted detectives from the Criminal Investigations Directorate to swing into action where they found Engineer Kakiiza with Ndege in her office. She tried to block them from effecting the arrest in vain. The two were picked up and locked up at Kabalagala Police Station but the RDCC was released on bond. 

The Directorate of Public Prosecutions instituted the corruption charges against Kakiiza in the Anti-Corruption Court while Ndege was charged with obstructing officers on lawful duties. However, she has since refused to appear in court to plead to the charges, which prompted prosecution to request for the arrest warrants. 

Her lawyers told Court last year that Ndege enjoyed immunity from prosecution being the representative of the President and prosecuting her contravenes the constitution. They asked court presided over by the Acting Chief Magistrate, Robert Mukanza to refer the matter to the constitutional court for interpretation, which was done. 

Prosecution filed an appeal against Mukanza's decision through the Head of the Criminal Division of High Court Justice, Wilson Kwesiga who called for the file from the Constitutional Court. On February 10th, 2020, Justice Kwesiga ruled that it was improper for the Magistrate to refer the matter to the Constitutional Court.  

He quashed Mukanza's orders and ordered that the file be returned to Buganda Road Court Chief Magistrate for appropriate action.  This morning, Ndege’s lawyer, Francis Habomugisha told journalists outside court that Lt. Col. Nakalema and his client are engaged in politics of mudslinging, which should stop.