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Killer soldier appeals 30-year jail sentencePublish Date: May 16, 2014
Killer soldier appeals 30-year jail sentence
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Corporal Herbert Rwakihembo was given a 30-year jail sentence for killing his girlfriend. PHOTO/Kennedy Oryema
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By David Lumu

Corporal Herbert Rwakihembo was serving in Somalia under the Ugandan contingent in Amisom for five years.

According to Judge Advocate Major Raphael Mugisha, he used to remit all his earnings into the account of his girlfriend, Irene Namuyaba. Not even the account of his wife, 27-year-old Jane Namale.

So in 2012, he returned from Somalia on official leave and decided to pay a visit to his ‘side dish’ (mistress).

“The mistress had another boyfriend – a motorbike cyclist. When he found them in a room he was renting for this lady, he went back to the barracks, got a gun and shot at both of them. But the cyclist survived,” Mugisha said.

But the mistress did not.

The division Court Martial sitting at Luzira sentenced Rwakihembo to 30 years in jail for killing his girlfriend Namuyaba, and her friends Zaina Nassolo Nnalongo and Loyce Kawendeke as well as for the attempted murder of Ali Bavawala, on December 10, 2012.

On Thursday, the hearing of his appeal started at the Makindye-based military court.

In the appeal, Rwakihembo wants the court martial to quash the 30-year sentence, arguing that he was provoked to shoot and that he didn’t intend to kill anybody.

Mugisha said that the contention that the seven-member team of the General court Martial would be grappling with in this appeal is whether someone who was found guilty of manslaughter in the lower court should also be found guilty of attempted murder of another person who survived.

Brigadier Moses Ssentongo Diba, the chairman of the military court said that they will give a ruling on May 23.

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