Ecstatic celebrations Friday afternoon filled High Court in Kampala as family and friends welcomed the freedom of rally driver Andrew Desh Kananura and four other murder suspects.
Desh and his brother Raymond Kananura together with three others were acquitted by High Court’s Justice Joseph Murangira of all charges related to the murder of Badru Kateregga
At around 3Pm the court room was filled to capacity when the suspects arrived to hear the verdict on the case that has lasted nearly 5 years.
The other three suspects accused of orchestrating the murder of Kateregga in September 2012 are Samuel Nzoreba, story Jacob Onyango and Sirus Maganda.
Justice Murangira in his judgment was dissatisfied with the efforts by state prosecution’s efforts to prove beyond reasonable doubt that the suspects did murder Kateregga. A weak defense alone, page he noted, treat was not sufficient to convict the accused.
Prosecution needed to prove beyond reasonable doubt that there was unlawful death, which resulted from malice aforethought and that each of the accused persons participated.
The judge pointed out however, that prosecution failed to prove that all the 5 suspects participated in the murder, noting that state witnesses contradicted themselves which strengthened the defense case.
None of the accused for instance, was placed at the murder scene, even by Taika Emona, the only state witness who claimed to have been at the scene. The rest of the witnesses, the judge says, were testifying only on hearsay.
“All the accused persons in their unsworn evidence informed court that at that time they were not at Panamera Bar which was never contested by the prosecution,” he ruled.
On claims that Desh threatened some of the witnesses including senior police offices, hence their failure to appear in court to testify, the judge was doubtful, wondering how such senior police officers armed with guns could fear for their lives.
The Judge thus concurred with Court Assessors’ advice to acquit the accused persons. He also acquitted the fifth suspect Jacob Onyango on law, although the assessors wanted him convicted.
After the judgement, Senior Principle Attorney Jane Okuo Kajuga one of the prosecutors in this matter and the spokesperson for the office of the DPP revealed that they are going to appeal against the ruling, citing a number of issues.