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UPDF captain arrested over alleged extortion

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The State House Anti-Corruption Unit has arrested a Uganda People’s Defence Forces –UPDF Captain, Emmanuel Abaho, on allegations of extorting money from a businesswoman in Mityana.

Captain Abaho was arrested alongside his alleged accomplice, Wilberforce Turyakira, by operatives at Café Javas in Kampala on Monday evening.

It all started two weeks ago when the suspects approached Esther Ampumuza, at her hotel in Mityana municipality claiming they were officials from the National Environment Management Authority –NEMA.

Ampumuza told the operatives that when she demanded their particulars, they then changed and claimed they are attached to State House environment desk. She added that the suspects quickly demanded land titles of her hotel which they claim was constructed in a wetland.

“They said my hotel and swimming pool were built in a wetland. They demanded a certificate from NEMA that authorized me to build a hotel and swimming pool in a wetland. I told them to give me time so that I can bring the certificates but they refused,” Ampumuza said in her statement.

Capt. Abaho and Turyakira were on Tuesday paraded before the media by SHACU team. The suspects according to investigators, they will be arraigned in anti-corruption court any time after investigations are concluded.

Ampumuza further revealed that when the suspects pressed her so hard to give them money, she called her friend who is a UPDF General. The military officer alerted the head of the State House Anti-Corruption Unit, Lt Col Edith Nakalema, and a trap was set to arrest the suspects.

The investigators revealed that operatives met with Ampumuza and she convinced the suspects to meet in town to receive 800,000 shillings.

“They came unsuspecting that they would be arrested. We deployed our covert team in strategic positions and they were arrested as soon as they received the money,” an investigating officer said.

Lt Col Nakalema and her team have arrested and charged 80 suspects to court over corruption, extortion and fraud cases. Nevertheless, only six people were convicted, three were acquitted and 71 were still awaiting trial by the end of 2019.

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