Crime & Investigation

BIG STORY: Fearing Arrest, Busoga Minister Hellen Namutamba Hides at Kadaga’s Muyenga Residence

On Monday, May 11, detectives swung into action to arrest a one Paul Kinene from Jinja town, eastern Uganda.

Kinene is a social media enthusiast who recently posted on his Facebook a fake news report that deputy Speaker of Parliament, Jacob Oulanya had died in Germany.

This time round, Kinene was accused of cyber harassment by Bukedea District Woman MP Anita Among.

Among recorded a statement at police, saying her reputation was being damaged by Kinene’s Facebook posts.

Kinene had alleged that President Museveni was giving large sums of money to Among to undermine Speaker Rebecca Kadaga.

Earlier, Kadaga had met with MPs from Teso region about the controversial COVID-19 MP facilitation fund (Shs 10bn) which Museveni ordered be handed to district taskforces.

Kadaga told Teso lawmakers that returning the money was not only embarrassing her but part of the wider plan by the executive to undermine her authority.

Kinene posted some of the details of the meeting on his Facebook page but targeted MP Among who opted for legal action.

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Upon being arrested, Kinene confessed to detectives that he was receiving funds via mobile money from Busoga Kingdom Minister of Tourism, Hellen Namutamba to attack Kadaga’s rivals.

Kinene said Namutamba would write stories targeting Busoga politicians and pay him to share them on various social media platforms.

Police detectives on Monday afternoon called Namutamba to report at CID headquarters for interrogation, a request she has turned down.

Officials at Police were uncomfortable commenting on a case given its sensitivity.

But a low-ranking detective told this investigative website on Tuesday morning that upon being called to record a statement, Namutamba rushed to Kadaga’s residence in Muyenga where she is hiding.

“The first impression was that being a public figure, Namutamba would voluntarily come to police. But now that she has started playing games, we will issue formal summons to her,” said a detective who is briefed about the investigation.

Kadaga met Namutamba in London where the latter was financially struggling.

On the advice of Kadaga, Namutamba returned to Uganda where she was appointed a presidential assistant on wealth creation and also served as an aide to Justice Catherine Bamugemereire during the inquiry into land conflicts in the country.

She became Kadaga’s right-hand woman, helping her manage her private publicity campaigns.

Many politicians in Busoga region accuse her of relentlessly attacking them on social media.

Efforts to obtain a comment from Namutamba did not bear fruit as multiple calls to her known cellphone went unanswered.

Contrary to reports that Namutamba had been arrested, officials say she abandoned her residence in Namugongo and has been on the run since yesterday.

By Tuesday afternoon, detectives were drawing plans to arrest Namutamba after busting her hideout in Muyenga.

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