Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The Kawempe North MP Muhammad Ssegirinya has shown Buganda Road Magistrates Court wounds on his body shortly after denying new charges of inciting violence this morning.
Ssegirinya has been arraigned before the court presided over by Grade One Magistrate Doreen Olga Karungi and charged with one offense of incitement to violence which he denied.
Court heard that between August and September 2020 while in Kampala, Ssegirinya alias Mr Update made statements on his Facebook page “Ssegirinya Muhammad Fans Page ” calculated to incite the public to participate in violence against a section or group of Ugandans.
He is quoted by the Prosecution to have posted. “I am warning those who are trying to assassinate Hon. Robert Kyagulanyi Sentamu that what will happen will be forty times worse than the 1994 Rwandan genocide”.
The State Attorney Judith Nyamwiza told court that she was unable to inform court on the status of investigations because she didn’t have the police file.
Nyamwiza noted that she was holding brief for Peter Mugisha who is the State Attorney conducting this particular case and he is the one with the file that contains the status of inquiries.
But, Ssegirinya through his lawyers Jonathan Kiryowa and Shamim Malende asked court to be given a shorter date for adjournment such that they can be able to prepare sureties and their documents before they can seek bail.
Malende added that the State should be ordered to expedite inquiries because his client is unwell.
Before the Magistrate could adjourn the matter, Ssegirinya asked to be given an opportunity to display to how he was tortured by people he described as goons recently when he was rearrested after being given bail by Masaka High Court.
Permission was granted to the legislator who is currently in Kigo prison on other charges arising from Masaka Magistrates Court and was appearing via a video conferencing link.
Ssegirinya then in his blue blazer lifted his left leg and displayed to court a foot with multiple wounds that appeared to be drying steadily.
The Magistrate directed the prisons to give him medical treatment and they informed court that they are already managing him.
But immediately after seeing the wounds, Ssegirinya’s mother Sanyu Christine Nakajumba broke down in tears in court and was lifted and taken outside by some of the people who had come to follow the proceedings.
Nakajumba wept as she said that her son should be forgiven by the State and appealed to President Yoweri Museveni to set Ssegirinya free arguing that he didn’t know what he was doing when he made the post.
According to Nakajumba, once Ssegirinya is set free, as a mother she is going to counsel him to desist from participating in anything that may result into a crime.
The case was then adjourned to October 29th 2021 and Ssegirinya who is already in Kigo jail on charges of terrorism, murder and attempted murder contained in a different file from Masaka Magistrates Court has been remanded till then.
Ssegirinya has been in prison since September 7th 2021 when he was arrested and remanded to Kigo prison together with his Makindye West counterpart Allan Ssewanyana.
This was after being charged with terrorism, aiding and abetting terrorism, murder and attempted murder stemming from their alleged involvement in the Greater Masaka region machete killings, which claimed more than 20 lives between July and September 2021.
Based on the presumption that they are innocent, Masaka High Court Lady Justice Victoria Nakintu Katamba on September 20th 2021 granted them bail. However, the duo was re-arrested in separate incidents from the precincts of Kigo prisons.
Early this week, the two legislators through their lawyers filed fresh bail applications. However, Justices Nakintu Katamba and Lawrence Tweyanze abstained from hearing their bail applications citing the complexity of their case files.
Ssegirinya has other unresolved charges of inciting violence pending before Buganda Road Magistrate’s Court in connection to his demonstration near Mini Price in March 2021 demanding the release of all political prisoners arrested in connection to the general elections.
But this case which was already in its advanced stages stalled when the trial magistrate went for maternity leave.
The display of alleged torture injuries by Ssegirinya comes barely two months after President Museveni warned the security agencies to desist from torturing suspects.