Justice Kwesiga faulted the state for sanctioning a file that lacks concrete evidence. He made the statement after the State Attorney admitted that the file had been sanctioned based merely on the boy’s statement and that there were no other witnesses.
She was barely 17 years old when she went to work to pay a school fees debt after sitting her O'level exams. Instead when she asked for her pay after one month, she was arrested and charged with defiling a 4-year-old boy in the home. The DPP actually sanctioned the file for her to be prosecuted although there was no evidence or witnesses to back the charges. And thus began the teenage girl's journey of nearly one year in prison.
Finally today, the Director for Public Prosecutions has withdrawn the case of aggravated defilement against Shifa Nambusi, to the great joy of her parents who had allowed her to go and work in the home where her wages were denied and instead a serious accusation slapped on her.
The DPP’s decision was disclosed today by State Attorney Mariam
Njuki during the High Court Criminal Session being held at Entebbe Chief
Magistrate’s Court. Justice Wilson J. Kwesiga is presiding over the month-long
Njuki said the state had lost interest in the case,
expressed in a letter written on April 7.
Before withdrawing the case, Nambusi had pleaded not
guilty to the charge of aggravated defilement. The state accused Nambusi of
performing a sexual act on a 4-year-old boy in February 2020, contrary to Sections
129 (3) and 4 (a) and (b) of the Penal Code Act.
The crime was allegedly
committed in Kitende village, Kajjansi Town Council. It was reported by Rose Kajumba,
a resident of Kitende village, Kajjansi Town Council.
Justice Kwesiga asked Nambusi about her relationship with
Kajumba. She said that Kajumba was her former employer, for whom she worked
for a month as a house maid.
Nambusi, aged 17 years, told court that she had worked for a
She added that she would have enrolled for senior five, but
did not due to the court case.
//Cue in: “Wali…
Cue out:…this case quickly,”//
In a statement recorded by police officers attached
to Kajjansi Police Station, Kajumba noted that Nambusi defiled her grandson at
home. She made the statement on March 23rd, 2020 while her grandson
made his on March 29th, 2020. Excerpts of the boy's statement indicate that Nambusi made him to "sit "on her private parts and also "drink her breast" three times.
Justice Kwesiga however noted that the evidence did not appear
water tight, because it almost seemed to be based on hearsay, that is what the
boy supposedly told his grandmother after Nambusi’s dismissal. Kwesiga doubted whether the statement was a true record from a 4 year-old. He thereafter asked the state to produce the boy in court.
Njuki however said the boy and Kajumba were absent.
Kwesiga also asked whether the state had witnesses to corroborate
the boy and Kajumba’s statements. Njuki responded in the negative.
//Cue in:”If she did…
Cue out:…no other witness.”//
As a result, Kwesiga faulted the state for sanctioning a
file that lacks concrete evidence. He
made the statement after Njuki noted that the file had been sanctioned based on
the boy’s statement and that there were no other witnesses.
//Cue in: “You see State…
Cue out:…against this girl.”//
During the proceedings, Njuki informed court that she had a
letter from the DPP saying the case should be withdrawn.
Meanwhile, Nambusi’s relatives were overjoyed by the news
that the case has been concluded.
Abdu Kaziba, 57 years and a builder, is happy about the
withdrawal of the case. He is the father of Nambusi. He attended the
proceedings with his eldest daughter Jamillah Nakyeyune.
They told Uganda Radio Network that Nambusi has spent 8
months at Kigo Prison on trumped up charges.
Kaziba says Nambusi’s woes started in February last year after
she reported a case against Kajumba at Kajjansi Police Station. She accused Kajumba
of refusing to pay her 70,000 shillings, the amount she was supposed to be paid
after working as a housemaid at Kajumba’s home for a month.
He says he has had sleepless nights ever since August when Nambusi was remanded to Kigo Prison and he was not allowed to visit due to COVID-19 restrictions.
He thereby lauds Kwesiga for highlighting the loopholes in the case.
Nakyeyune says Nambusi was in her senior four vacation and
agreed to work in order to pay part of a debt of shillings 200,000 at her former
school (Royal College School in Bulaga along Mityana Road.