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New CID boss tasked to reinvestigate murder of nine family members

Pastor Stephen Mugambe and wife Noeline Nalunya were murdered together with seven family members in the same house. URN photo

Kyotera, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The family of nine people who were murdered in Kyotera, together with the district leaders have tasked Maj. Tom Magambo, the new Director of Criminal Investigations Directorate-CID, to re-investigate the case for justice.

The appeal came up on Wednesday when the family held prayers for the deceased at Kyebe.

The gruesome incident occurred on January 13, 2013, at Mutegombwa village in Kanabulemu parish, Kyebe sub-county. The deceased include Pastor Stephen Mugambe of Kyebe Pentecostal Church and his wife Noelina Nalinya.

Others victims were relatives and in-laws namely Jane Nakiwala, Bena Nakivumbi, Max Nakirijja, Christine Nasimbwa, Dan Ssemwanga, Andrew Mpeirwe and Maria Nakajugo.

Unknown assailants attacked and hacked them all to death in one house, on the same night.

Police opened up a file CRB O15/13 Kasensero for investigations.

According to Willy Kalyango, one of the family members, it is nine years since the case went too cold after futile appeals to reinvestigate the incident. Kalyango explains that during the former CID boss Grace Akullo’s tenure, the case did not get significant and satisfying investigations which they want to be considered by Magambo.

He further explains the hustle they have gone through in trying to get justice for the deceased. Kalyango noted that the family has written to the president twice requesting his intervention in the matter but they did not get any response.

He says that the killers are roaming freely without paying for their crimes which puts the lives of other people in danger. He adds that the case was mismanaged by unscrupulous and incompetent police officers and urged the president to clean up the police force.

Francis Kizza, the Kyebe LC3 chairman says the case is not only a family matter but also a sub-county and district matter that needs special attention to solve. He noted that the affected family members were left out during the presidential compensation drive following the July-August 2021 family murders.

He says that the district leaders expected yearly visits and support to the family whose members including children who are currently living a deprived life.

Following the incident, several suspects including prominent rally driver Ponsiano Rwakataka, Emmanuel Zzinda, Asuman Muddu and Vincent Fagensi, a Tanzanian national were arrested while others have since remained at large.

Muddu, the key suspect in the case pleaded guilty to the crime in Masaka High Court which sentenced him to life in prison on 06/07/2015.

But his co-accused denied any knowledge and involvement in the murder and were acquitted by the presiding Justice John Eudes Keitirima.

In the DPP’s letter to the Director CID dated 18/09/2019, seen by URN, the matter (file) had earlier been reviewed but could not be revived by way of an appeal, or revision due to the retraction of Muddu’s confession and lack of corroborative evidence in the case.

However, the DPP instructed Grace Akullo to reinvestigate the file and include all key evidence for the prosecution of the case. Akullo said the department concluded its investigations and sent the file to the DPP for further recommendation.

Benedict Odyek, a Deputy Assistant Inspector of Police (D/AIP) in charge of the file, said they managed to collect new evidence in the case and sent the file to the Homicide department for further submission to the DPP for review.

However, the matter is still stalled and nothing has gone on since 2019 which leaves the family desperate.

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URN

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