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Senior police officers accept trial before the Army Court

Police officers in the dock at the General Court Martial in Makindye on Oct. 27.

Kampala, Uganda | GODFREY SSALI | Seven Senior Police Officers have been charged before the Army Court in Makindye with kidnap of  two people.

These had refused to plead to the said charges last month saying the General Court Martial had no jurisdiction to try their case, and were then remanded to prison.

On Monday, SPC Joel Aguma, SSP Nixon Agasirwe Karuhanga, D/ASP James Magada, D/AIP Benon Atwebembeirwe, D/Sgt Abel Tumukunde , SPC Faisal Katende and D/CPL Amon Kwarisima appeared before the seven-member-panel of the Army Court, and pleaded not guilty to the allegation.

Through their lawyers led by Caleb Alaka they informed the Court Chairman Lt. Gen. Andrew Gutti that they had dropped the earlier objections and are now willing to take plea.

The officers are jointly charged with two foreigners Rene Rutangugira and Bahati Mugenga for allegedly conveying two people Joel Mutabazi and Jackson Mutabaazi to the Rwanda Government without their consent.

They are said to have committed this offence on the October 25, 2013 at Kamengo in Mpigi district, while armed with a pistol and grenade which are ordinarily a monopoly of the UPDF.

The police officers have again been sent back to Makindye Millitary barracks and Luzira prison respectively until December 04, 2017, after efforts by their lawyers to secure for them bail proved futile.

However investigations into this case are still incomplete.

Earlier the Army Court dismissed a request by SSP Nixon Agasirwe the former commandant of the Special operations Unit, to be separately charged from his other eight colleagues .

Agasirwe wanted to be tried separately on grounds that the joint trial would disrupt his flow of evidence, but the Court found no merit in his application and dismissed it.

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