The Anti-Corruption Court has threatened to issue an arrest warrant for Kawempe South MP Mubarak Munyagwa over failure to appear before the court and answer corruption charges.
For the second time, Mr Munyagwa, who is also the chairperson of the Parliamentary Committee on Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises, failed to show up in the court on Wednesday to defend himself on allegations that he solicited for a bribe of Shs100m from Mr Francis Kakumba to enable him influence the system so that he could be appointed to the Kampala Land Board.
Prosecution led by Ms Alice Komuhangi Khaukha asked court to issue an arrest warrant, arguing that Mr Munyagwa has deliberately refused to turn up in court despite several attempts to serve him summons by both the parliamentary secretary and a police officer from court.
However, his lawyer, Mr Chrisestom Katumba, presented a travel document before court, arguing that Mr Munyagwa is out of the country on official duty.
However, the state rejected this, saying that if Mr Munyagwa is indeed out of the country on official duties, the office of the speaker would have known and communicated to the effect.
“The fact that the office of the speaker is not aware of his travel, it means he is not out of the country and if he is, then he is on his personal duties. Even the travel document presented is not sufficient to prove that his out of the country since it is just an entrant that can be done by anybody,” Ms Komuhangi said.
However, the chief magistrate, Ms Pamella Lamunu, declined to issue a warrant of arrest against the legislator.
“Since his [Munyagwa] lawyer has also pledged to personally bring him to court, I will extend the criminal summons for the last time and failure to appear a warrant of arrest will be issued,” Ms Lamunu ruled.
The magistrate extended the criminal summons to April 5.
Prosecution states that in December 2014 at Haks Investment Limited, being a Mayor Kawempe Division, Mr Munyagwa solicited for a gratification of Shs100m from Mr Francis Kakumba in exchange for him to exert improper influence over Kawempe Division Urban Concil to nominate Muyanja Isaac ( S/O Francis Kavuma) for appointment as a member of Kampala City Land Board representing Kawempe Division.
In count two which is also corruption, Mr Munyagwa in the same year is also accused of receiving a gratification of $ 20000 an evaluate of about Shs73million from Mr Kakumba in exchange for him to exert improper influence over Kawempe Division Urban Council to nominate Isaac Muyanja (S/O Kakumba).
Mr Munyagwa in count three which is also corruption in the same year is accused of receiving a gratification of Shs4million from Mr Kakumba in exchange for him to exert improper influence over the Kawempe Division Urban Council to nominate Mr Muyanja (S/O Kakumba) for appointment as a member of Kampala City Land Board representing Kawempe Division.