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Boda boda cyclist sentenced to caution over possession of military hardware

Charges against Waswa (L) have been withdrawn and Mbazira (R) sentenced to caution. URN photo

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The General Court Martial in Makindye has sentenced to caution, a boda boda cyclist Bashir Mbazira, for unlawful possession of defence stores.

The court presided over by Lt General Andrew Gutti on Monday afternoon sentenced Mbazira following his plea of guilt.

Mbazira, a resident of Kabimbiri village in Mukono district was on September 20, 2021, arraigned before the Court Martial together with Salongo William Waswa, a mechanic from Kavule village in Kayunga district.

According to the prosecution, on June 12th 2021, along Nakyesa-Kayunga road in Kayunga district, the two were accused of having Uganda People’s Defense Forces-UPDF camouflage uniforms which are gazetted defence stores.

The military prosecutors led by Captain Ambroz Guma told the court that although Mbazira has no past criminal record, the offence he is charged with is common in the country and asked for a deterrent sentence.

On his part, Mbazira through his lawyer Major Kamanda Silas Mutungi informed the court that he is a young man aged only 22, remorseful and willing to go back to the community and become a responsible citizen.

Mbazira further added that he has been in jail since June 21, 2021, when he was arrested and should therefore be given a lenient sentence.

Gutti considered the submissions and sentenced him to caution.

“That after deducting three months and twenty-nine days spent on remand and a period of eight months for mitigating factors, this court hereby sentences you, Mbazira Bashir, to a caution unless you are held on other lawful charges”, said Gutti.

The UPDF Act provides for a maximum sentence of life imprisonment for the offence Mbazira has been facing.

Guma also asked the court to withdraw charges against Wasswa arguing that he didn’t have sufficient evidence against him.

Meanwhile, the Court Martial sentenced Meddie Musoke, a mechanic from Kyamabale village, Kibinge sub county  in Bukomansimbi district to one year, six months and 21 days for being in possession of a firearm.

Court presided over by Lt General Gutti convicted and sentenced Musoke based on his plea of guilt after he was found with a numberless Starter Automatic Pistol with an empty magazine on October 2, 2018.

Musoke who had previously denied the charges has been in jail for three years.

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