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Suspects arrested at Usafi Mosque pin South Africa-based Agaba in Magara kidnap, murder

Patrick Agaba’s lawyers have asked court in South Africa not to send him to Uganda because the country still has the death penalty.

Suspects arrested in the raid on Usafi Mosque in Kampala have told investigators that Patrick Agaba, aka, Pato, was part of the group that plotted the kidnap and murder of Susan Magara, PML Daily can exclusively reveal.

Security agencies have for long believed that Agaba, who is Magara’s distant cousin, is the key suspect in the murder and have since March been trying to have him extradited from South Africa to face trial.

And now sources close to the investigation have told this website that the suspects, who have admitted to participating in the murder, have implicated Agaba in the murder.

This latest revelation, sources said, may be a big step in resolving the complex murder that has puzzled security agencies.

Susan Magara’s gruesome murder raised eyebrows. (FILE PHOTO)

Earlier, PML Daily reported that the suspects arrested in the Usafi Mosque raid confessed to having participated in the kidnap and murder of Magara but that they were acting on the orders of someone, whom they had not revealed.

Magara’s family is said to have told security agencies that some member of the family was involved in the murder.

This website reported that security agencies believe Pato flew out of the country with $200,000, which is believed to have been the ransom that Magara’s parents paid to the killers.

Pato was arrested on March 7 by South African police in collaboration with Ugandan security agencies ISO, ESO and CMI.

However, the court in Randburg asked the Ugandan security agencies to present enough evidence that Pato committed crimes that would call for his extradition to face trial here.

As part of the evidence presented in the court in Randburg, Johannesburg, the government team states that the voice recording of the person who was demanding for the $1 million (about Shs3.6 billion) ransom, which was later reduced to Shs700m, from Magara’s parents was Agaba.

Agaba’s lawyers, however, have petitioned the court, challenging the extradition on grounds that Ugandan laws allow a death penalty and the suspect would be subjected to it, contrary to the South African laws.

About two weeks ago, we reported that President Museveni met his South African counterpart Cyril Ramaphosa in a bid to expedite the process of extraditing Agaba to Uganda.

Over the last week, security agencies have made strides in the investigation with the help of the suspects who were arrested in the Usafi Mosque raid.

The suspects have led the security agencies to a house in Konge, Buziga, where they said Magara was being held before she was murdered.

In the process, a video clip showing kidnappers cutting off her fingers to demand ransom from her parents was recovered

The joint security team investigating the murder has also since recovered several phone handsets and SIM cards that it believes were used by her kidnappers in the three-week ordeal.

The suspect also led to detectives the vehicle which was used to transport Magara’s body, eventually leading to the arrest of the owner, who sources say is a woman.

Security sources said the investigations also retrieved several land titles and car sale agreements, which the investigators  believed were bought using the Shs700m ransom money.

The suspect also took the investigations team to the various scenes of crime.

Security officers raided Usafi Mosque in Kampala, shooting dead two men, arrested dozens. Some of the suspects have since pointed at Agaba as the main suspect.  

They are said to have gone to Buziga first, then to Kabaka Anjagala Road in Rubaga Division, Kampala, where Magara was kidnapped from on February 7 and then Kitiko, between Kigo and Kajjansi near the Entebbe Expressway, where her body was found.

Security agencies have also arrested the owner of the house in Buziga over allegations that he knew of the Magara murder plot.

So far, security has arrested more than 20 suspects over the murder, among them Agaba, and Ronald Asiimwe, aka, Kanyankole.

The investigations team maintains that Pato is still the main suspect and are working around the corner to have him extradited from South Africa to face trial.

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