Mayiga Aide In Torture Scam, Blames Woes on Business Rivals
By Our Reporters
Leading Kikuubo tycoon John Freeman Kiyimba stands accused of orchestrating psychological torture and month-long detention of Julie Nabunya, his business cashier for many years. Through his lawyer Martin Muhumuza, Kiyimba who is a close aide to Katikkiro Peter Mayiga of the tofali fame maintains that Nabunya connived with business rivals including the proprietor of Standard Supermarket to defraud him of close to Shs400m.
Trading under FROLY investments Ltd, Kiyimba has been employing Nabunya for many years in his larger than life business empire in Kikuubo as a cashier. Nabunya would go to clients, market the products (mostly BIDCO cooking oil and soap), invoice them and get the money-in both cash and cheque form. Kiyimba, who is the complainant in CRB/FSU/GEF/17/2017, says that on May 31st 2014 Nabunya committed a criminal offence when she defraudingly forged a Standard Bank cheque, accompanied it with forged bank slips and thereby causing financial loss to the company she worked for.
The cheque was worth Shs5.98m and this was presented as part of the prosecution evidence against Nabunya in the Buganda Road Criminal Court session on Friday evening. She was formally charged after languishing in what her lawyers and family called illegal detention at CPS where she was first detained on April 16th 2017. She was also charged with the count of uttering false documents but prosecution didn’t disclose the person to whom it was uttered. Acting on Kiyimba’s complaint, prosecution also alleges that between May 2014 and January 2017, Nabunya committed another offence of theft when she connived with others to steal Kiyimba’s Shs384m.
Nabunya denied all the charges maintaining she was innocent. However, the Magistrate declined her bail application deferring his decision to Tuesday May 16th. Nabunya, who is understood to know many potentially damaging business secrets that have kept Kiyimba thriving, was remanded to Luzira after her lawyer protested her previous confinement at Nalufenya which has lately been christened the police torture chamber. But Nabunya’s lawyers and family members accused Kiyimba of deliberately subjecting her to a torturous ordeal in order to break her down so that she makes a false confession implicating his business rivals.
Nabunya has previously told relatives visiting her at CPS that she is ready to die in jail but won’t falsely testify against fellow city tycoons who are supposed to be fixed in Kiyimba’s favor using the court process. She has also previously told relatives that the claim (Shs384m) against her has been deliberately exaggerated to justify confiscation of her personal properties as a way of recovering the money for Kiyimba.
The claim further is that Nabunya has previously been approached, while in CPS detention by torturous Flying Squad operatives, by strangers advising her to surrender her house, Mityana road/Buloba plots of land and cars so that they are sold to recover Kiyimba’s money.
Relatives say this is the reason the complainant Kiyimba worked so hard to ensure she is kept in detention until she agrees to his terms in return for her freedom. Already her lawyers have written to the office of DPP protesting her torturous ordeal.
It’s claimed some of the torture she has endured since April 16th has taken place in CPS rooms 83,84 & 85 all of which are manned by the much dreaded Flying Squad operatives headed by Herbert Muhangi. Family members are concerned why it’s Flying Squad, famous for working for the rich that is spearheading the tormenting of their daughter and not the mainstream police at CPS. Her lawyers say Nabunya has previously been taken to several possible detention centers including Nalufenya whose commandant refused to accept her for detention there on grounds it’s a detention facility for high profile criminals like terrorism suspects and not low profile suspects like her.
There have also been efforts to use the Makindye court to quietly try and send her to Luzira. This too failed after top judicial officials intervened and warned the Makindye Magistrates to back off this clandestine trial.
KIYIMBA SPEAKS OUT
While at Court on Friday, Freeman Kiyimba spoke to Sunday Pepper and denied torture allegations saying there was a lot of evidence to implicate Nabunya and the business rivals she has been working with to undermine the Kiyimba business empire from within.
“Now how can they say I want her to die in Nalufenya? I’m not police you go and ask police why they took her to Nalufenya. I have nothing to do with that at all. I’m here simply because I’m a victim. You imagine all that money,” Kiyimba elusively explained after the Friday court session.
Kiyimba also said the sophistication with which Nabunya connived to steal his company money justifies the CPS operatives’ decision to treat her matter as one fit for Nalufenya. His lawyer Martin Muhumuza maintained that “we have a lot of information about this and this is just the beginning because even those other business people in Kampala working with her are going to be brought to this court to stand trial.”
Muhumuza said that they are weighing options of pursuing some of these Nabunya accomplices in civil courts after which they will have to be criminally prosecuted. He specifically named Standard Supermarket whose proprietors he said have a case to answer regarding Kiyimba’s Shs384m that was stolen between May 2014 and January 2017. Apparently Standard Supermarket is among the business entities that buy or access BIDCO products through Freeman Kiyimba’s dealership.