The wife of the Kamwenge Town Council Geoffrey Byamukama Kammanda, this who was arrested late last month and tortured at the Nalufenya detention centre, has opened up on the plight of her now disabled husband.
The Mayor, who is also the Kamwenge NRM district chairman, was detained purportedly in connection with the murder of AIGP Andrew Felix Kaweesi last month.
The wife, Mrs Viola Komugisha says the mayor is currently hospitalized with serious wounds he sustained from Nalufenya, which rendered him immobile.
We caught up with the mayor’s wife — who also suffers a serious ailment in her legs and requires walkers to move around — at her house in Kamwenge, and she took us through the ordeal.
Mayor Byamukama, she says, was arrested in Kampala where he had gone to conduct personal business.
He was picked up at the shop owned by a Commissioner in the Lands Ministry, who he was visiting.
From here, according to relatives who spoke to us earlier, the mayor was taken to Nalufenya in Jinja where he was detained for days and critically injured, while being tortured.
Mrs Komugisha says she last heard from him on a Thursday, and her efforts thereafter to reach her again were futile. Four days later she says she was almost certain, her husband had been murdered.
“I talked to him on Thursday and he told me he was sending me medicine for my legs. The next day when he was arrested, I had no plans to call him again until on Saturday when one of her daughters called me saying his phones had gone off,” she said.
She adds that they waited until Sunday when they decided to contact the area (Kibaale County) MP, Hon Cuthbert Abigaba Mirembe, who in turn contacted a cabinet minister and the two got in touch with senior police officers in Kampala, who traced Mayor Byamukama down to Nalufenya.
Police remains tight lipped on the matter. The spokesperson told us that matters related to the Kaweesi murder investigations have to be discussed specifically.
According to Mrs Komugisha, her husband was wrongfully arrested on a baseless tip from one of the key suspects in the murder of Kaweesi.
The suspect, who she only identified as Hassan told security operatives at Nalufenya that he worked together with Mayor Byamukama in the murder.
She points out however, that her husband together with Hassan had long term disagreements and that mentioning him as an accomplice in the murder of Kaweesi could have been out of revenge.
She says, Hassan was a known member of the ADF Rebels and that Byamukama fought him until he and his group was arrested years ago.
“I think the government released them, and now when they recaptured him in the murder of Kaweesi he decided to seek revenge on my husband,” she said.
With doubts on whether or not her husband will be able to walk again, Kyomugisha says they are mulling filing a lawsuit over the mayor’s torture.
“We are being helped by our (council) speaker, together with other leaders at the district to get a lawyer,” she said.
Currently, she says, Byamukama is unable to walk, and that he is being heavily guarded by soldiers at his hospital bed.
She adds that all the money he had on him was taken by the arresting officers and that they are still holding onto his phones.