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Jamil Mukulu Asks "Anti Muslim Judge" to Step Down from His Case

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Mukulu who was appearing via video conferencing first started by asking the Judge her name in open court and the Okalany introduced himself to him before he told her that he had two issues to make .
16 Jul 2020 13:20
Former ADF Commandant Jamil Mukulu Appearing in Court via video conferencing on Thursday.

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The jailed leader of the rebel Allied Democratic Forces-ADF, Jamil Mukulu stirred court this morning when he asked Justice Susan Okalany to step out of his bail application hearing, saying she is anti-Muslim. 

Mukulu was appearing before the High Court International Crimes Division via video link from Luzira prisons.

Mukulu first asked Justice Okalany for her name, saying he had two issues he wants to court to address

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After getting Justice Okalany’s name, Mukulu said she is biased to dispense justice in the matter since she was one time quoted by local newspapers, saying she was afraid Muslims would kill her. 

He explained that there is no way Justice Okalany can dispense justice since he is also a Muslim. 

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Justice Okalany who looked surprised by Mukulu’s utterances asked him to prove the allegations with evidence. 

She reminded him that there are laid down procedures for someone to ask a judge to step out of his case.

Mukulu stood his ground, saying he knows it too well that Justice Okalany revealed her sentiments against Muslims, adding that she might deny him bail if she proceeds with the application. 

Justice Okalany advised Mukulu to raise his concerns through his lawyers, Anthony Wameli, Geoffrey Turyamusiima and Hamuza Ssekidde who were present in court. 

Prior to this drama, the State Prosecutor, Marion Ben- Bella had informed court that she wasn’t ready to respond to Mukulu's bail application.    

She informed court that she was served with a huge document on Tuesday evening. Marion Ben- Bella asked for more time so that she can read the document in order to draft an appropriate response to the application. 

Justice Okalany adjourned the matter to August 6, 2020.

 

Background  

Mukulu was arrested in Tanzania and extradited to Uganda in 2015 to face a string of charges including terrorism, murder, aggravated robbery, attempted murder and being a member of a terrorist group, ADF. 

He was accused of commanding his co-accused to acquire firearms and training in neighboring countries and funding for social, economic, political and religious motives. 

The state alleges that Mukulu and his group raided Muslim communities most of whom they disagreed with on particular issues like where to face during prayers.  

It is alleged that it against this background that the group eliminated Muslim clerics such as Sheikh Yunus Madango and top Shia Cleric, Dakitoor Abdulqadir Muwaya.

The suspects also allegedly attacked Bugiri Police Station and killed two Police Officers identified as Karin Tenywa and Muzamir Babale.

In 2019, Justice Eva Luswata assessed the evidence the state intends to use to implicate the suspects and found it sufficient to sustain 20 charges against them. 

Mukulu was accordingly committed to ICD for trial, which has failed to kick off.  It is on this ground that Mukulu is pushing for his bail.

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