Bobi Wine, Arua suspects face new charges

Kyadondo East MP Robert Kyagulanyi alias Bobi Wine and his co-accused in the treason case before court in Gulu have been slapped with fresh charges.

Kyagulanyi with 37 others including MPs Kassiano Wadri (Arua Municipality), Gerald Karuhanga (Ntungamo Municipality), Paul Mwiru (Jinja Municipality East) and Francis Zaake (Mityana Municipality) had new charges read to them as they appeared before Gulu Grade One magistrate Isaac Imran Kintu.

The new charges include, acting with intent to alarm and ridicule President Yoweri Museveni, incitement to violence, disobedience of lawful orders, failure to prevent obstruction of traffic and failure to give right of way.

Wadri is also separately charged with entering with a firearm in a hotel where people were drinking intoxicants. He is also jointly charged with Kyagulanyi on the count of incitement to violence which is based on statements they allegedly made on August 13, 2018 during Wadri’s final campaign rally in the Arua Municipality by-elections.

As the court proceedings kicked off, the defence team led by Henry Komakech and Benjamin Katana asked the magistrate to deliver a ruling on their March 14 application to refer the matter to the Constitutional Court to determine the constitutionality of the trial.

However, state prosecutor Julius Ocen objected arguing that since the charges the suspects are facing are capital in nature, a magistrate’s court has no jurisdiction to entertain any application related to the cases.

“It can only be before the High Court which has jurisdiction to try cases that are capital in nature. The process before this court is for the purposes of committing the suspects to the High Court and therefore, this court can only limit itself on that process,” Ocen argued.