SSEGIRINYA, SSEWANYANA LAWYERS APPLY FOR REMANDED NUP MPS’ BAIL
Video: MoH MESSAGE ON CHILDREN & MATERNAL HEALTH
By Joel Mugabi
Lawyers representing Kawempe North MP Muhammad Ssegirinya and his Makindye West counterpart Allan Ssewanyana have applied for bail, detailing reasons why the youthful legislators should be released and allowed to attend hearings and trials while coming from their homes.
Ssegirinya and Ssewanyana were last week remanded to Kigo Government Prison by Masaka Court Magistrate Charles Yeteise over charges of murder and attempted murder related to their alleged involvement in a recent spate of killings in Greater Masaka Area.
Prosecution alleges that on August 23, while at Ssetaala and Ssenya villages in Kimanya-Kabonera Division of Masaka City, the two MPs participated in the murder of Francis Kizza, Sulaiman Kakooza, and Tadeo Kiyimba and attempted to murder Ronald Ssebyato.
The MPs have instructed their legal team to apply for bail. Their lawyers, led by Abubaker Ssekanjako of Lukwago and Company Advocates, have listed at least six reasons why they (the MPs) should be released from Kigo.
Ssekanjako has argued that the law presumes that the accused are innocent until proven guilty. The lawyer also claimed that Ssegirinya and Ssewanyana are battling life-threatening health conditions that medical teams in Kigo Prison and other facilities cannot manage. To prove why they should be released to get specialized treatment, the MPs’ legal team attached copies of medical forms belonging to Ssegirinya and Ssewanyana.
Ssekanjako further argued that given the fact that the youthful MPs are suffering serious health complications, keeping them on remand might worsen their condition since it was clear police investigations were standing in the path to their freedom. That even if they were to wait for investigations to be completed, there was a cloud of uncertainty hanging over the length of time police detectives and the prosecution needed to file evidence and present their case.
The lawyers went on to note that Ssegirinya and Ssewanyana are MPs with constituents whose views they are mandated to present in Parliament and that continued detention made it impossible for them to execute the roles for which they were elected in elections held months ago.
That by keeping the two legislators behind bars, the state was violating the right of representation that should be enjoyed by thousands of people that reside in the constituencies of Kawempe North and Makindye West.
The legal team also argued that bail was a constitutional right and that the MPs had capacity to present before court substantial sureties who would ensure that they attend hearings and trials in the case.(For comments on this story, call, text or whatsapp us on 0705579994, 0779411734, 0200900416 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org).