KAMPALA – City Hall Court on Monday, November 23, 2020 issued criminal summons to presidential candidate Lt Gen Henry Tumukunde to answer charges of treason and illegal possession of fire arms.
Grade One Magistrate Valerian Tuhimbise ordered Tumukunde to appear on 21st December 2020.
This was after senior state attorney Lilian Omara sought the summons after Gen Tumukunde failed to show up.
“We are shocked by the submissions of the defence counsel. They are turning around from their record of September where they asked for dismissal of the case for the lack of prosecution and indeed the case was adjourned for the last time,” Ms Omara said.
“If campaigns are ongoing, does it mean the case will not go on? I think the defence came thinking we had no witnesses. Since the accused is not in court, we apply for criminal summons,” she added.
This was after Tumukunde’s lawyer Anthony Wameli told court that his client was stuck in Kagadi and hence could not come to court. However, prosecution sought criminal summons against Tumukunde arguing that he was in court on 23rd September when the case was adjourned to today and hence should have appeared.
The treason charges stem from his statement in an interview on NBS TV, where he said that, ”If I was Rwanda, I would support people who wish to foster change in Uganda.” Prosecution said the statement is a call on Rwanda to invade Uganda and cause an unlawful change of government.
Prosecution also alleged that Tumukunde was in possession of a Star pistol and AK47 rifle without a license to have both at his private property in Kololo where he was arrested.
Counsel Wameli however notified court about his intention to file an application on matters of human rights violations. He raised issues of person liberty, right to a doctor and freedom from torture.
He says his client was kept for six days and only produced after they filed for his production, he was psychologically tortured when he was in solitary confinement and while there, denied access to a doctor.
Wameli wants the human rights violations case heard before the cases against his client proceed. He wants the cases stayed.
According to the Human Rights Enforcement Act 2019, a magistrate court is required to hear human rights violations matters that arise during proceedings before the main case is heard.