Kamwenge Mayor Byamukama Released on bond

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Kamwenge Town Council Mayor, Geoffrey Byamukama, has been released; five months after police arrested and tortured him in connection to the killing Assistant Inspector General of Police Andrew Felix Kaweesi. Police spokesperson Asan Kasingye says Byamukama was released yesterday without charges  on police bond and that he is required to report to Kira Road Police Station once every week.

Kamwenge Town Council Mayor, Geoffrey Byamukama, has been released; five months after police arrested and tortured him in connection to the killing Assistant Inspector General of Police Andrew Felix Kaweesi.

Police spokesperson Asan Kasingye says Byamukama was released today on police bond and that he is required to report to Kira Road Police Station once every week.

Byamukama was arrested on April 5, from the Ministry of Lands office along Parliament Avenue in Kampala, almost three weeks after the March 17 murder of Kaweesi, his driver Geoffrey Mambewa and body guard Kenneth Erau. The three were gunned down in Kulambiro, a city suburb, just metres from Kaweesi’s residence.

Immediately after the shooting, police arrested 13 people who were consequently arraigned in court on April 21 and charged with murder. It is some of these suspects that, according to police, mentioned Byamukama, who is also the NRM party chairperson for Kamwenge District.

Byamukama’s story would take a new twist in May, when photos of him with deep wounds on his body, believed to be as a result of torture, emerged. He was then admitted at Nakasero Hospital. He later told journalists that he was tortured from the police detention facility at Nalufenya in Jinja district.

The police later issued conflicting statements on the circumstances under which Byamukama sustained the injuries.

On the morning of May 12, however, AIGP Kasingye issued a statement acknowledging that Byamukama was tortured at the hands of two police officers identified as Fred Tumuhiirwe and Ronnie Byenkya.

“After the arrest, two of our officers and the suspects got involved in a scuffle on the way to Jinja after Byamukama realised he was not being taken to Naguru Police headquarters as earlier informed at the point of arrest. The suspect sustained superficial injuries in the process which were aggravated by his medical condition,” said Kasingye in the statement.

The two officers were placed under investigations by the Professional Standards Unit (PSU). Their arrest followed a heated security meeting on May 11 between the Inspector General of Police (IGP) Kale Kayihura and several commanders and directors involved in the Kaweesi murder investigations.

On May 26, four policemen were charged in connection with the alleged torture contrary to section 4 of the Prevention and Prohibition of Torture Act 2012. They also faced another count of causing grievous harm contrary to section 219 of the Penal Code Act.

According to the charge sheet, the policemen allegedly tortured Byamukama using batons and iron bars while driving him in a police van after his arrest.

The suspects; Patrick Muramira, Fred Tumuhairwe, Habib Roma and Ben Odeke, pleaded not guilty. Buganda Road Chief Magistrate Jamson Karemani remanded the suspects to Luzira Prisons.

URN

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