KAMPALA – Highcourt Judge Steven Mubiru has on Wednesday, January 8, 2020 ordered for the separate trial of businessman Mathew Kanyamunyu and his girlfriend Cynthia Munwangari.
Kanyamunyu, his girlfriend Cynthia Munwangari and his elder brother Joseph Kanyamunyu are facing murder charges of shooting to death Kenneth Akena, a child rights activist near Kampala on November 12, 2016.
This was after be separately tried from co-suspect Joseph Munwangari who is reportedly sick and admitted in Hospital.
This has been after defence lawyers led by Mac Dusman Kabega asked court to have the matter adjourned for 15days until Kanyamunyu’s eleder brother Joseph who is reported to be admitted in hospital recovers.
However justice Mubiru has ruled that that even in joint trials , each accused is individually liable thus Joseph can not be tried in his absence yet he can not deny his two accused persons their right to a speedy trial which they are entitled to.
“This matter has delayed and traversed to two sessions and this is the third one. Section 51(1) gives court powers to separate the trials of this nature,” the judge ruled.
The judge has added that to balance public interest with speedy disposal of cases, the case has to be separately heard since Joseph’s medical report doesnot even indicate when he will be fit to stand trial.
He has now given prosecution up to today 2pm to make necessary amendments in the chargesheet so that Mathew and Cynthia trial proceeds at since 7 witnesses are already present in court.
Although the 3 suspects appear on the same charge -sheet, Joseph Kanyamunuyu is separetely indicted with being an accessory after the commission of Akena’s murder.
Prosecution alleges that Joseph hid the killer gun inorder to conceal evidence against his brother Mathew Kanyamunyu.
It’s further alleged that on November 12, 2016, Mathew, Munwangari, Joseph and other accomplices still at large, while on Kampala- Jinja Road near Malik Car Bond, opposite Uganda Manufacturers Association offices, in Nakawa Division, with malice aforethought, caused the death of Akena.
In January 2017 the trio who are on bail where committed to the High Court for trial and in the summary of the evidence presented before court, Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), says that he has sufficient evidence to sustain the murder charge against the trio for the shooting Akena on the fateful day.