By Davis Buyondo
RAKAI - Kalisizo Magistrates Court on Thursday sentenced Pastor William Muwanguzi, commonly known as Kiwedde, to two years in Masaka Prison.
He was found guilty of impersonation while his co-accused, Julius Mukasa, was acquitted.
He was also been remanded until January 19, 2014 for the final judgment in a case where it is alleged that the pastor attempted to escape from prison and causing malicious damage on government property.
Susan Awidi, the presiding magistrate passed the judgement amid tight security following threats from residents who had earlier vowed to deal with Muwanguzi in case court had acquitted him.
While delivering her judgement, Awidi said the prosecution led by Mariam Akite produced enough evidence in the case while the defendants could not avail enough evidence and witnesses for defence.
Muwanguzi and Mukasa have been on remanded since their arrest in November until today, December 12, 2013, when Mukasa was released.
While in the dock, Muwanguzi was composed, before the judgment, but was visibly scared as the magistrate declared him guilty and incarcerated him for two years.
Muwanguzi’s wife, Patience Akinambabazi almost collapsed after the magistrate passed the judgment. She shot up in protest saying Muwanguzi was unfairly treated.
Posing as Catholic priests from Kenya Muwanguzi and Mukasa organised an unauthorised Charismatic Renewal prayer service with intent to extort money from the innocent faithful.
On November 9, 2013, during their arrest at Nabisere Hotel in Kalisizo town council, their accomplice whom the Police only identified as Rogers disappeared with the money collected from the faithful.
Kalisizo Police arrested the duo, charged them with impersonation and produced them in Kalisizo Magistrates court for hearing of their case. The two were then remanded to Kalisizo Prison where Muwanguzi attempted to escape.
As a result, prison wardens arrested him and took him to Kalisizo Police station to record a statement and later charged him with attempted escape and causing malicious damage to government property.
The defendants applied for bail, but their application was rejected because their sureties were not substantial enough. Muwanguzi further pleaded for release claiming he suffered from diabetes and pressure.
He further said he had a metal in his leg supporting his movement and needed to see his doctor, but prosecution objected to his pleas saying he had not produced any medical form in court.
On Thursday morning, Catholic faithful from all walks of life filled the courtroom in wait for the judgment of Muwanguzi’s case expecting the magistrate to begin Muwanguzi’s case first, but to their dismay she began with other cases until about 1:00pm.
Shortly after the sentence, Muwanguzi was whisked away to Masaka Prison while the Catholic faithful including priests and catechists chanted.