Jamil Mukulu Expected in Jinja Court Today
By Serestino Tusingwire
The incarcerated former Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) leader, Jamil Mukulu is expected to appear before Jinja High Court today for hearing of numerous charges against him.
Jinja chief magistrate court presided over John Francis Kaggwa on December 29, 2016, adjourned the hearing of a case in which Mukulu is charged with terrorism among other crimes to January 30, 2017, which is today.
This was after his lawyers Caleb Alaka, Ladislaus Kiiza Rwakafuzi and Samuel Muyizzi told court that Mukulu last appeared in court on September 6, 2016.
Alaka explained that on this occasion, the state prosecutor asked for one month’s adjournment which was granted but the accused was never returned to court, but instead remanded to Luzira prisons.
He noted that a production warrant issued by the court required Mukulu to appear on December 21, 2016 and when this failed it was extended to December 29, 2016 but still he was nowhere to be seen.
“This is the second time a production warrant was made and served to the Uganda Prisons in Luzira, where the applicant was remanded but we are surprised they have failed produce him before this honorable court,” he said in December.
Alaka who said they (lawyers) were not informed why Mukulu never appeared, tasked the state prosecutor James Muliro, to explain why Mukulu was missing in court but he (Muliro) too said he was not aware why Mukulu was absent.
Alaka observed that the state’s conduct was against article 28 and 44 of the Uganda constitution and that it affects the applicant’s rights to have a fair hearing.
Alaka further complained that Mukulu was committed to the High Court in his absence, which he described as an abuse of the suspect’s right to fair hearing.
“The applicant (Mukulu) is entitled, as an accused person to be formally committed in his presence and also entitled to committal documents including a summary of evidence,” Alaka said.
Mukulu, who was arrested in Tanzania in April 2015, was first detained at Nalufenya, a police detention facility for violent crime suspects located in Jinja before being remanded to Luzira.
He is accused of terrorism and murder charges, including masterminding the murder of almost 100 students of Kichwamba Technical Institute in 1998.