Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Mathew Kanyamunyu has been sentenced to five years in Prison for manslaughter, which is unintentionally killing social worker Kenneth Akena in 2016.
Kanyamunyu’s murder charge was reduced to manslaughter by the Director of Public Prosecution after a plea bargaining session held at the High Court criminal division in Kampala on Thursday.
According to his lawyer Peter Kabatsi, the DPP sanctioned amended charge sheet has been presented to court in which Kanyamunyu has pleaded guilty to the lesser case of manslaughter.
“Therefore Kanyamunyu has accepted before court that on the 12th November 2016 at Kampala Jinja Highway he unlawfully caused the death of Kenneth Akena. On the fateful day, Kanyamunyu and Akena got involved in a motor accident which resulted into a scuffle and Kanyamunyu shot Akena in the chest,” Kabatsi stated.
Justice Stephen Mubiru ruled that since Kanyamunyu is a first time offender and also took the victim to the hospital, he won’t get life sentence but court has accepted his bargain of six years imprisonment. Mubiru says that court has reduced the sentence by 11 months, meaning he is to serve 5 years.
He has been advised to appeal the sentence if he considers it harsh.
“Kanyamunyu is aged 43 years and he is a first offender, after shooting Akena, he realised the gravity of his actions and rushed the deceased to hospital where he told the doctors what had happened and attempted to save his life,” ruled Justice Mubiru.
“The following day he was pronounced dead succumbing to excessive bleeding from the gunshot wound. After agreeing to the facts of the offence, Kanyamunyu has now been convicted on his own plea of guilt and now awaits sentencing. He sought out the deceased’s family and community leaders and asked for forgiveness. He suffers from hypertension, he is a single parent to 4 minor children. ”
Kanyamunyu who was facing murder charges alongside his girlfriend Cynthia Munwangari, recently went for a traditional ritual known as Mato Oput prior to this court hearing.
In this ceremony held at the Ker Kwaro Acholi (Acholi Chiefdom) Kanyamunyu reportedly admitted to killing the deceased and was asked to pay ten cows and three goats by the elders in Acholi.
He had previously pleaded not guilty before the trial Judge.
Earlier, Kanyamunyu told court that his lawyers Caleb Alaka, Mc Dusman Kabega and Evans Ochieng seemed to have abandoned him.
The DPP in mitigation says Akena’s death caused a lot of trauma to the family and the unrecovered gun could be used in the commission of other offences adding that the offence is grave and carries a maximum of life imprisonment.
The DPP has also withdrawn murder charges against Kanyamunyu’s girlfriend Cynthia Munwangari according to Kabatsi.