Ibrahim Kaweesa, 38, was on Friday charged afresh before the Nabweru Chief Magistrate’s Court, shortly after the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP), Justice Mike Chibita, withdrew the charges against his 12 co-accused.
PIC: Ibrahim Kaweesa appearing before the Chief Magistrate's Court
KAMPALA - A man accused of murdering a number of women in Nansana Municipality has been charged with 21 counts relating to murder, terrorism, rape and aggravated robbery.
Ibrahim Kaweesa, 38, was on Friday charged afresh before the Nabweru Chief Magistrate's Court, shortly after the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP), Justice Mike Chibita, withdrew the charges against his 12 co-accused.
According to the indictment presented in court by state attorney Joan Keko, Kaweesa, an ex-convict raped and murdered nine women in Nansana, before he robbed them with their valuables such as phones and mattresses, among others.
Chief magistrate Rebecca Esther Nasambu did not allow Kaweesa, a resident of Nansana west zone, to plead to the charges, saying that they are capital offences only tried by the High Court.
While in the dock, an emotional Kaweesa said he is not scared of the new charges because to him they are trumped up.
"I know these charges have been slapped on me because I talked about the Police chief, Gen. Kale Kayihura. But the murderers of the women are the Police officers who are facing trial before the army court in Makindye," Kaweesa said.
However, the chief magistrate stopped him, saying that she was not interested in her story.
Kaweesa also brought the court into laughter when he asked the magistrate to read and interpret to him article 128 of the Constitution.
The 12 whose charges were dropped by the DPP include Tina Prosper Nantongo, a wife to Kaweesa and the only female who had been indicted on the charge.
Others are Robert Mugerwa, Isma Tamale, Steven Ssendijja, Mahad Kakumba, Sam Mayambala, Philip Tumuhimbise, David Wasswa, George Ssempa, Bosco Waligo and Ismael Ssegawa.
They were represented by Peter Lubulwa and King Darius Bitanako.
"The matter is coming up for further mention. However, I have instructions from the DPP in a letter dated January 11, 2018 to discontinue charges against 12 accused under article 120 of the Constitution," Keko said.
This prompted the Keko to discharge the group under section 121 of the Magistrate's Court Act (MCA).
The group was arrested in July 2017 following the murder of a number of women in Nansana in the same style. There murders were characterised by victims having sticks inserted in their private parts, before dumping their bodies in bushes.
It is alleged that Kaweesa raped, murdered and robbed properties od Juliet Nampijja alias Jalia Nantabazi, Patricia Nansubuga, Maria Birungi, Josephine Nakazibwe, Teddy Nakacwa, Juliet Kyandali, Gorreti Nansubuga and two other women who have not yet been identified.
The chief magistrate sent Kaweesa to face trial at the High Court, after Keko submitted in court committal papers for Kaweesa.
On terrorism, prosecution alleges that Kaweesa, for purposes of intimidating the public for social, political or economic reasons, directly involved himself in the acts of terrorism by murdering a number of women in Nansana.
It is further alleged that Kaweesa robbed the deceased of their property, including a mattress, mobile phones, blankets and pairs of bed sheets.
Meanwhile, it was a moment of joy on the side of the 12 whose charges were dropped. They were seen hugging themselves and praising God.
Their lawyers hailed the DPP for releasing their clients after he realised that there was no evidence pining them.
"We commend Justice Chibita for upholding the DPP's image," Bitanako said.