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DPP drops charges against presidential protest musician

By Barbra Kabahumuza, Michael Odeng

Added 14th April 2018 12:15 PM

Prosecution states that the duo between 2015 and 2017 at Salama road, Makindye division in Kampala district willfully composed, recorded, produced and electronically communicated through social media a song titled “Wumula mzee” literally meaning rest old man.

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David Mugema and Jonathan Muwanguzi before the Buganda Road Court on Friday. Photos by Meddie Musisi

Prosecution states that the duo between 2015 and 2017 at Salama road, Makindye division in Kampala district willfully composed, recorded, produced and electronically communicated through social media a song titled “Wumula mzee” literally meaning rest old man.

The Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) has discontinued criminal proceedings against two musicians, who sung and produced a song that disturbed the peace of President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni.

On Friday, state prosecutor Abdul-Salaam Waiswa informed court that the DPP has decided to discontinue proceedings against David Mugema, 31, and Jonathan Muwanguzi, 23, charged with offensive communication, without giving any reason.

“Your worship, the DPP has decided to withdraw the case against the accused and here is the withdrawal form to that effect,” Waiswa said, as he presented the form to court presided over by Grade one magistrate, Gladys Kamasanyu.

The DPP also withdrew charges of abetting offensive communication against the duo. The offences the duo was charged with carries a maximum sentence of one year imprisonment upon conviction. 

The form which the prosecutor presented to the magistrate was signed by the DPP, Mike Chibita and copied to Buganda Road Court resident state attorney Jonathan Muwanganya and the regional CID officer Kampala Metropolitan South Region.

This prompted the magistrate to discontinue proceedings against the duo.

 avid ugema and onathan uwanguzi celebrate their freedom David Mugema and Jonathan Muwanguzi celebrate their freedom

 
The duo was battling the said charges under section 25 and 21 of the computer Misuse Act of 2011. Early this year, they were charged and remanded to Luzira maximum prison after they denied the charges but were later granted bail.

A sign of relief was written on the face of the two musicians, who are residents of Salama in Makindye division, Kampala. They even promised to organise a party to celebrate their victory.

The Magistrate also directed the prosecutor to give the suspects instruments that were confiscated by the police during their arrest. The instruments are two computers, two mobile phones, six loud speakers and their corresponding gadgets.

Prosecution states that the duo between 2015 and 2017 at Salama road, Makindye division in Kampala district willfully composed, recorded, produced and electronically communicated through social media a song titled “Wumula mzee” literally meaning rest old man.

According to prosecution, the said song attacked and disturbed the peace of President Museveni with no purpose of legitimate communication.

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