Africa-Press – Uganda. The Army in Kampala court has remanded three suspects in connection to the kidnap and subsequent murder of former Ntoroko District National Resistance Movement (NRM) Chairperson, Japheth Kabagambe Ahebwa.
Barnabas Alleluya, a businessman/native doctor and resident of Kagando Cell, Rukindo Ward South Division in Mbarara District; Deus Ahimbisibwe, a driver and resident of Kyakazizi village in Kyakazizi Parish, Rwanyamahembe Sub-county in Mbarara District and Herbert Mutamba also a businessman and resident of Ncucumo cell in Kitwe ward in Rwentuha Town Council in Bushenyi District were Monday remanded by the Makindye-based General Court Martial.
The trio appeared before the court chaired by Lt. General Andrew Gutti and charged with kidnap, murder, aggravated robbery and unlawful possession of ammunition. Court heard that the accused, together with others still at large while in Fort Portal tourism city at around 4pm on September 2, 2021, kidnapped Kabagambe with intentions of killing him. Kabagambe who was last seen at one of the ATMs in Fort Portal was found dead two days later in a swamp in Ibanda District.
According to the prosecution, the suspects also robbed Shs400,000 from Kabagambe, either before or after killing him. The suspects pleaded not guilty to the charges. As a result, the prosecution led by Maj Emmy Ekyaruhanga and Captain Ambroz Guma told the court that investigations are still ongoing and asked the court to remand the accused persons up to November 1, 2021. Gen Gutti, accordingly remanded the suspects to Kitalya prison.
Prior to his elevation to the position of Ntoroko District NRM chairperson, Kabagambe served as District Publicity secretary. He replaced Vincent Mugume, who was also killed in November 2019, together with a motorcyclist he was travelling with to Kandito village in Karugutu Town Council in Ntoroko District.
According to court records, Herbert Mutamba, one of the suspects before the court has a criminal record. Mbarara High Court convicted him on October 18, 2013 of aggravated robbery after finding him guilty of robbing Kalist Nuwasasira of Shs1.2 million and other items such as airtime cards for the then Zain, Orange and MTN, a laptop, two Samsung mobile phones, all valued at Shs 15 million on December 15, 2009.
The records further show that Mutamba used a gun to commit the robbery, which occurred in Kakoba Central Cell in Mbarara District.