After spending two weeks on remand in Luzira Prison, nine youth charged with participating in unlawful protests early this month were on Thursday granted cash bail of Shs400,000 each by City Hall Magistrate’s Court.
The suspects include Mr Ferdinand Luutu, Mr Amos Ojok, Mr Oloya Akena, Mr Ambrose Juma, Ms Nasimbwa Nalongo, Mr Augustine Ojobilo, Mr Joram Mwesigye, Mr Robert Mayanja, and Mr Norman Tumuhimbise.
The suspects who call themselves the ‘Jobless Brotherhood’, through their lawyer, Mr Isaac Ssemakadde had pleaded with the grade one trial magistrate, Mr Moses Nabende to grant them a non-cash bail, saying they are jobless youth but in vain.
“Your worship two of the suspects, were earlier granted bail on similar charges and terms but, have never broken any condition. There is no sound reason as to why state prosecutor, Ms Joyce Onyango should object to the suspects bail.
The allegations that my clients will frustrate the investigations are baseless,” Mr Ssemakadde said.
He added: “My clients have no previous criminal record and bail should not be denied on mere allegations.”
Subsequently, the magistrate granted the suspects a cash bail and non-cash bond of Shs 3million for each of their two sureties.
They were charged with one count of participating in unlawful assembly on the Kampala streets.
Prosecution alleges that on August 4 this year, along Speke Road in Kampala the suspect with the intention of causing disturbance in Kampala participated in unlawful assembly by moving around with a coffin.
The Police records show that the suspects were arrested at the beginning of this month after they were found carrying banners with the wordings, ‘We are mourning for our country over corruption, unemployment, youth desertion. Do not lead us into temptations’.
They further show that they entered the city center at 7am and started their demonstration at Speke Road with intention of proceeding to the City Square.
This is the second time in less than two months that youth are arrested protesting over what they called their resentment towards “rampant corruption” and the escalating youth unemployment rates in the country.
In June this year, a similar incident happened at Parliament when two of the suspects; Robert Mayanja and Norman Tumuhimbise sneaked two piglets into Parliament.