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High Court grants Kabaziguruka bail

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Kampala High Court Judge Yasin Nyanzi has granted bail to Nakawa Municipality MP Michael Kabaziguruka who faces treachery charges before the General Court Martial.

Justice Nyanzi ordered Kabaziguruka to pay sh5 million in cash on top of signing a court bond of sh10m before he regained his freedom.

The judge then ordered Kabaziguruka’s four sureties including the Lord Mayor Elias Lukwago, FDC party president Gen Mugisha Muntu, FDC spokesperson Ibrahim Ssemujju Nganda and Rubaga North MP Moses Kasibante to also sign a non-cash bond of sh100 million each to ensure that Kabaziguruka returns to court for trial.

Kabaziguruka was also prohibited from travelling outside the country with out the court’s permission where he is to report twice every fortnight starting from November 5, 2016.

Before releasing Kabaziguruka on bail, Justice Nyanzi called on the  law reform commission, parliament and individual members to make amendments in the law  so that in future the DPP  doesn’t simply refuse to respond to matters before  court. This after the Attorney General, UPDF and Director of Public Prosecution dropped out of the bail hearing.

Justice Nyanzi heard Kabaziguruka’s bail application ex-parte  as the  DPP  refused to respond to it saying the law doesn’t allow him prosecute matters that are before the General Court Martial.

The judge ruled  that since this is not the first time the DPP  is refusing to prosecute matters arising out of the Army Court, he followed Judge Masalu Musene example when he released General Sejusa on bail in the absence of the DPP earlier this year.

Like Justice Masalu,  Justice Nyanzi said he can not just sit and fold  his hands when a litigant is before him seeking justice.

In granting Kabaziguruka bail, the judge considered that he has a fixed place of residence in Luzira Kampala,  two pieces of Land in Mukono and Nansana, his presumption of innocence, having substantial sureties  and the fact that no one was opposing his release on bail.

However even though the MP has since challenged his trial in the Army court, the said court has fixed November 8, 2016 to commence hearing of his treachery case.

Kabaziguruka  challenged this trial in the Court of Appeal and  refused to  plead to the charges on grounds that he is not a military officer to be tried by the military court.

Lead prosecutor Maj. Raphael Mugisha informed the 7-member court chaired  by Lt. Gen Andrew Gutti that investigations  are complete and he is ready to summon witnesses to testify against the accused.

Kabaziguruka with 25 other people including 22 UPDF officers are said to have contrived a plot to overthrow the government of Uganda by use of fire arms,  an offence the prosecution says was committed between  February and June this year in the districts of Kampala,  Wakiso and Luweero.

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