Otafiire’s rival gets temporary freedom
Dononzia Kahonda Mugabe, the embattled Member of Parliament for
Ruhinda County in Mitooma district was on Friday granted bail
by Jinja High Court Judge, Eva Luswata.
Kahonda was released on a non cash bail of Ushs.100 million although his passport was retained by court.
Recently, some of Kahonda’s supporters and Kanungu districts councilors were arrested for pouring water on Gen. Kahinda Otafiire, the Justice and Constitution Affairs Minister who is thought is engaged in a court battle with Kahonda over the constituency post.
The councilors accused Kahinda of persecuting their MP. Kahonda defeated Otafiire twice; in the primaries as well as in the general elections to secure the coveted MP’s seat.
On June 7, the Jinja Chief Magistrate John Francis Kaggwa convicted and sentenced MP Kahonda to 9 months in prison on eleven charges of impersonation, forgery and uttering false documents and was accordingly sent to Kirinya prison in Jinja to serve his sentence.
The charges stemmed from allegations that he uttered a Uganda Certificate of Education [UAC] to UNEB and pretended to be Mutabazi Levan Dickson whereas not.
He was also accused of having forged a medical report on UPDF entry form at the UPDF Military Academy in Jinja in the name of Mutabazi Levan Dickson and purported that the same document t was genuine whereas not.
Dissatisfied with the verdict, Kahonda, a retired Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) captain appealed against it before the Jinja High Court and accordingly applied for bail pending the hearing of his appeal.
The MP is challenging the jurisdiction of the Chief Magistrate’s Court of Jinja for having handled his case that did not originate from within its jurisdiction. He further argued that the Chief Justice did not also authorize this hearing as provided for under Section 7 of the Magistrates Court Act to cure the illegality, hence its decision was a nullity.
Kahonda was on Friday picked from Kirinya Prison and produced before the Luweero Chief Magistrate Charles Sserubuga and charged with two fresh counts of forgery and uttering false documents.
Prosecution alleges that Kahonda forged an Ordinary level (O-level) and Advanced Level (A-level) Certificate of Education which were presented to Ndejje University for admission.
But Caleb Mwesigwa, one of Kahonda’s lawyers says such charges against his client are another fishing expedition to ensure that Kahonda is swept of the political scene and kept in detention.
The lawyer questioned the urgency that caused his client’s immediate presentation before court in Luweero even when he was receiving medication for pneumonia and malaria. He however, claims that the rush was in anticipation that the Jinja High Court could grant him bail.