Prosecution has this morning presented three witnesses to pin 14 Muslim clerics who are being charged with murder, attempted murder and terrorism.
At the start of the hearing on Monday, the 14 suspects denied all the charges before a panel of three justices of the International Crimes Division of the High Court.
The three justices are Ezekiel Muhanguzi. Other justices are Jane Kiggundu and Percy Tuhaise.
Today, prosecution led by Principal state attorney Lino Anguzu presented three witnesses, (names withheld since this is a sensitive matter) and they pinned the suspects.
According to an amended charge sheet, the 14 suspects and others still at large are accused of comprehensively involving themselves in the attempted murder or attack on Ssonko Najib, Bahiga Mustapha, Umar Swadiq, Ibrahim Hassan Kirya, Mahamood Kibaate, Haruna Jemba and Omulangira Kassim Nakibinge. The crimes were allegedly committed between December 2013 and June 2015 in Kampala, Wakiso and Mayuge districts.
One of the witnesses, a police constable told court that he was the first respondent at the scene in Bwebajja where Sheikh Mustafa Bahiga was gunned down.
The witness told court that he was just a police officer who responded to a shooting in his area, and not an investigator. He also admitted to not knowing who carried out the gruesome murder of Sheikh Bahiga.
The witness who seemed less prepared told court he had only been asked to appear as a first police officer respondent at the scene.
Another witness a medical clerk told court that she was leaving her workplace on Entebbe road on the night of Sheikh Bahiga’s murder when she had a car hooting.
“I was leaving and I heard a car hooting, and the gate keeper opened the gate because we knew that was an emergency and I didn’t leave the hospital. I quickly went back and a speeding vehicle parked at the entry of the hospital. Two young men jumped out of the vehicle calling for a doctor” she narrated.
The witness adds that as the nurses tried to put drip on the patient (Sheikh Bahiga), he said; “Temumpisa mubulumi buno, manyi ngenda kuffa. Kamoga, bwotyo bwosazewwo? Kale kanfilile Ediini.” literally meaning, ‘do not subject me to all this pain, I know I am going to die. Kamoga, is this what you have decided? Ok, let me die for Religion.”
According to prosecution, the deceased could have been speaking about Sheikh Muhamad Yunus Kamoga, the lead suspect in the case.
Those charged today include; Sheikh Siraji Kawooya, Sheikh Muhamad Yunus Kamoga, Sheikh Murta Mudde Bukenya, Sheikh Fahad Kalungi, Amir Kinene, Hakim Kinene Muswaswa, Katende Yusufu alias Abdallah, Sekayanja Abdulsalam alias Kassim Mulumba, Sematimba Abudulhamid Mubiru, Hamza Kasirye, Twaha Sekitto, Jingo Rashid, Musa Issa Mubiru and Iga George William.
Originally, this matter had 31 suspects but the state discontinued charges against 17 of them. They however face similar but separate charges before Nakawa Court.
The hearing continues tomorrow morning at the Criminal Division of the High Court Kampala.
Court on Monday appointed three assessors; Judith Muhaiirwe, Ddumba Ahmed and Seguya Robert who will at the end of the hearing give a lay man's opinion on whether to convict or acquit the suspects.