Court Rejects Lwakataka’s Bail Application

Margaret Oguli Oumo, the Masaka high court Judge has dismissed the bail application of rally ace Ponsiano Lwakakata.

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Lwakataka is on remand in Masaka government prison in connection with the murder of Pastor Steven Mugambe of Kyebe Pentecostal church and eight members of his family.

He appeared Yesterday morning before justice Oguli for the hearing of his bail application. Prosecution alleges that on January 13, 2013, while in Kyebe Sub County, Lwakataka connived with Asuman Muddu to murder Pastor Steven Mugambe and eight members of his family.

The other murder victims are Noeline Nalinya, the deceased’s pastor’s wife, Bena Nakivumbi, Jane Nakiwala, Christine Nasimbwa, Max Nakirijja, Dan Ssemwanga, Andrew Mpeirwe and Maria Nakajugo Musanya.

All the nine were hacked to death by assailants who dug a hole through the wall of their house to gain entry and accomplish their mission, leading to the arrest of Lwakataka.

Last month, through his lawyer Hassan Kamba, Lwakataka filed a bail application before Masaka high court on grounds that he was suffering from acute ulcers, diabetes and hypertension.

He also argued that, his stay on remand was affecting the management of his businesses in Kyotera, Masaka and Kampala adding, that it was his constitutional right to get bail.

However, prosecution led by David Bakibinga, a state attorney objected to the bail application saying Lwakataka would abscond from court once released.

He also argued that releasing the suspect, would give him chance to interfere with evidence as he has already been implicated for intimidating state witnesses and members of the deceased family.

Bakibinga argued that, despite the fact that Lwakataka had claimed to be suffering from acute ulcers, diabetes and hypertension; he did not present any medical reports to back his claims.

In her ruling, Justice Margaret Oguli Oumo dismissed Lwakataka’s bail application saying she was satisfied with the submission of the state prosecution.

Oguli said she wouldn’t release Lwakataka on bail because he has already shown signs of absconding once he regains his freedom. She explained that, Lwakataka was facing charges of murdering nine people, which is a capital offense and therefore rejected his bail application.

She remanded him further to Masaka Central Prison and ordered prosecution to prepare all the files so that his trial starts in the next high court session.

Hassan Kamba, the defense lawyer said that he was okay with the ruling.

He however, promised to study the ruling and see how to file a fresh bail application. Lwakataka, who was dressed in checked –short-sleeved shirt, looked calm during the court session.