News Minister Rukutana released on bail

Minister Rukutana released on bail

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Mwesigwa Rukutana outside the prison gates. Photo: courtesy

Mwesigwa Rukutana outside the prison gates. Photo: courtesy





The state minister for Labour, Employment and Industrial Relations Mwesigwa Rukutana has been granted bail. Rutukana is battling charges of attempted murder, assault, malicious damage and threatening violence.

Rukutana was arrested with three of his bodyguards from his home in Kagugu in Rushenyi on September 4 and subsequently appeared in court on September 7. He was then remanded to Kitalya prisons in Wakiso district until today September 15. According to police, Rukutana and his guards shot at a vehicle belonging to a supporter of his rival Naome Kabasharira injuring one of the occupants, Dan Rwibirungi.

Today, Rukutana was granted cash bail of Shs 4 million by Ntungamo chief magistrate, Sarah Kolya Mponye. His four sureties were asked to execute a non-cash bond of Shs 50 million. The sureties included Jim Muhwezi, Robert Kabonero, Michael Mawanda, and Haji Ali Mutebi. Rukutana was also asked to deposit his passport with the court.

Rukutana appeared before the chief magistrate, via Zoom videoconferencing technology from Kitalya prison. In the application, the lawyers argued that Rukutana had a right to bail since the offences are bailable. The lawyers also argued that Rukutana had a permanent place of abode in Ntungamo district which is under the jurisdiction of the Magistrates court.

However, the prosecution led by Eunice Baine had objected to the bail application on grounds that the offence was grave and the accused may interfere with the investigations and witnesses because he is a minister and the investigations were still going on.

Kolya, however, overruled the prosecution and granted bail to Rukutana. She adjourned the case to November 3 when the case will up for mention. However, Rukutana’s co-accused who are also his bodyguards are still in detention. They are Egec Paul, Kozala Faizal and Okello John Bosco. 

Last week during the swearing-in of the new chief justice Alfonse Owiny-Dollo, President Museveni affirmed his stand against granting bail to suspects of capital offences, such as murder, rape, defilement and assault, saying it makes people lose interest in the judicial system.

 





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