Muhangi presented to the court a medical form stating his illnesses.
Muhangi in the dock at the court martial. PHOTOS: Margaret Zalwango
The former boss of the Police Flying Squad Unit, Herbert Muhangi has asked the General Court Martial to release him on bail on grounds of ill-health.
His lawyer Capt. Charles Ssekayita told the court chaired by Lt. Gen Andrew Gutti that SSP Muhangi is suffering from peptic ulcers, which has made it hard for his stomach to digest efficiently.
Ssekayita presented to the court a medical form showing that Muhangi’s illnesses cannot be treated in Makindye.
“Muhangi faces the same charges with former Police chief Gen. Kale Kayihura who was granted bail. I pray that court follows the same precedence and grant Muhangi bail,” Ssekayita requested.
He submitted that bail is a constitutional right which should not be denied.
“The presumption of innocence should not be taken away from Muhangi, and if the court denies him bail, then it would be acting contrary to the Constitution,” Ssekayita said.
He said Muhangi is ready to abide by the terms and conditions court will set if he is granted bail.
Ssekayita also argued that Muhangi has spent 290 days in detention at Makindye military barracks without trial. “if the person is remanded for over 180 days, the Constitution stipulates that he is entitled to mandatory bail.”
Col. Ndahura appeared before the court
Ssekayita also submitted that the continued detention of Muhangi at Makindye barracks violates his right to bail.
He said Muhangi has a fixed place of abode in Kireka and can easily be traced if he skips bail. He also said that Muhangi is the sole breadwinner for his family and that his continued incarceration has affected his children.
Muhangi presented to court three sureties in a bid to secure bail. They are Emmanuel Muhairwe, the Police human resource management, ACP Elvis Byamugisha, and a Makerere University lecturer Robert Kakuru.
Meanwhile, the same court will on February 11 next month rule on the bail application of former director crime intelligence Col. Ndahura Atwooki Birakurataki.
The state prosecutor Maj. Raphael Mugisha has asked the court to reject Col. Ndahura’s bail application but said in the event that he is granted, he should be restricted from traveling out of Kampala.
“It is the discretion of the court to deny or grant Col. Ndahura bail,” he submitted.
The duo is facing two counts of failure to protect war materials and one of aiding the kidnap and illegal repatriation of Rwandan nationals.
They are battling the charges together with the former Police’s Professional Standards Unit commandant Nixon Agasirwe, the former commandant special operations unit Richard Ndaboine, ASP Patrick Muramira, AIP Jonas Ayebaza, and Police-constable Abel Muyomba Kitagenda.
The prosecution alleges that the suspects aided or abetted the kidnap and repatriation of Rwandan exiles back to Rwanda against their wish, contrary to the Penal Code Act (PCA) Cap 120.