Police fire teargas as MP Ssekikubo is released on bail

Tuesday January 14 2020
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Lwemiyaga County MP, Theodore Ssekikubo being lifted by his supporters after Masaka Chief Magistrate's Court released him on bail on January 14, 2020. PHOTO BY AMBROSE MUSASIZI

Police on Tuesday fired teargas to disperse jubilant supporters of Lwemiyaga County MP, Theodore Ssekikubo after he was released on bail.
Mr Ssekikubo was released on Tuesday morning by Masaka Chief Magistrate Deogratius Ssejjemba on non-cash bail of Shs10m while his five sureties were bonded Shs25 million not cash each, pending hearing of his case.

The sureties included; Ms Babirye Kabanda (Masaka Woman MP), Hanifer Kawooya (Woman MP Sembabule), Barnabas Tinkasimire(MP Buyaga West), Florence Namayanja (MP Bukoto East) andJohnson Kamugisha , LC5 councillor Lwemiyaga Sub County.
According to court records, Ssekikubo together with a police officer Alex Mugabi who was acting as his guard then, on August 2, 2010 at Sembabule playground, during the ruling NRM party primaries, using an illegal firearm engaged in acts calculated to cause death and inciting violence.

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MP Ssekikubo blames Gen Tumwine for his woes

Monday January 13 2020

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Lwemiyaga County Member of Parliament, Theodore Ssekikubo has blamed his current woes on Security Minister, Gen Elly Tumwine.
Mr Ssekikubo is currently locked up at Masaka Central Police Station following his arrest on January 10, 2020 for allegedly mobilizing residents to defy the livestock quarantine, reopen livestock markets and inciting violence against law enforcement officers in Sembabule District.

However, the lawmaker accuses Gen Tumwine of enforcing the quarantine to create a monopoly and profiteer from cattle trade with his business associates at the expense of local livestock farmers.
He claims that although there hasn't been any confirmed case of the foot-and-mouth disease in Lwemiyiga County, the security agencies have insisted on closing cattle markets in total disregard of the provisions of the Animal Diseases Act that only mandates the Commissioner Animal Health to issue such directives.


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MP Ssekikubo to face attempted murder charges allegedly committed in 2010

Monday January 13 2020

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Police in Masaka Sub Region have amended the charge sheet for Lwemiyaga County MP Theodore Ssekikubo and preferred a fresh charge of attempted murder against him.
Last Friday, the southern regional police spokesperson, Mr Paul Kanagave had said the lawmaker was to be charged with assault, inciting violence and malicious damage to property.
However, by Sunday evening police had preferred the charge of attempted murder against the MP, an offence reportedly committed during the ruling NRM party primaries in 2010.
Mr Ssekikubo reportedly shot Habibu Nsamba Kanyarutokye, a security operative, in the private parts during the hotly contested party primaries where Ssekikubo was contesting with Patrick Nkalubo.

The MP’s lawyer, Mr Deo Musoke accused police of preferring trumped up charges against his client and keeping him in cells beyond the recommended 48 hours.
MP Ssekikubo was arrested Friday morning amid a scuffle between police and herdsmen who attempted to forcefully enter Lwemiyaga cattle market and sell their cows. Police had a week earlier closed the market following reported outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease in the area.
Mr Ssekikubo and a section of herdsmen insist some parts of the district like Lwemiyaga were placed under quarantine yet no cases of FMD had been reported there. They also disagree with veterinary officials for allowing other people in the said quarantined area to continue selling other dairy products like milk and ghee yet cattle trade was stopped.

Mr Musoke wondered why Mr Ssekikubo had not recorded a statement until Sunday evening when his fellow lawmaker Hanifa Kawooya (Woman MP Sembabule District ) visited him at Masaka Central Police Station cells.
“We have learnt about the new charge with shock because attempted murder is criminal offence and one could not participate in two elections that is 2011 and 2016 with such offences,” he said.
Mr Musoke said police officers had informed them that the complainant in the matter is Sembabule District police commander Mr Denis Musinguzi.
He said the case of attempted murder offence had earlier been withdrawn after the complainant lacked enough evidence to implicate Mr Ssekikubo.
Ms Kawooya wondered why police waited to arrest the legislator after raising concern on illegal cattle quarantine imposed in the area.

“I am going to start from where Ssekikubo stopped. The people of Lwemiyaga should be informed about the issue of imposing an illegal quarantine in their area because it now an issue of national importance,” she said.
Masaka Regional Police Commander, Mr Enock Abaine, said Mr Ssekikubo will be arraigned in court today (Monday) to face fresh charges.
“I am told that tomorrow [Monday] he will be taken to court and all details will be unveiled from there,” he said in a telephone interview on Sunday evening.

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  • Chaos as police arrest MP Ssekikubo over defying cattle quarantine

    Friday January 10 2020

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    Police in Sembabule District on Friday morning was compelled to fire teargas and live bullets to break up a weekly cattle market in Lwemiyaga County and consequently arrested the area MP Theodore Ssekikubo accusing him of defying quarantine imposed in the area.

    This was after Mr Ssekikubo and livestock farmers in the area attempted to forcefully enter Lwemiyaga Cattle Market which police closed last week.

    In the ensuing melee, police under the command of Masaka Regional Police Commander, Mr Enock Abaine intercepted the group, arrested Mr Ssekikubo and six other herdsmen and whisked them away in a police patrol.

    This is the second time in less than a month Ssekikubo together with a group of herdsmen have attempted to sell their cattle at the market. On December 20, the group succeeded and sold over 100 cows at the market in defiance of a quarantine that was recently declared in the area by veterinary officials, following a reported outbreak of Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD).

    However, Ssekikubo and the herdsmen insist some parts of the district like Lwemiyaga were placed under quarantine yet no cases of FMD has been reported there. By press time Mr Ssekikubo was still being held at Masaka regional police, waiting to record a statement.

    Mr Edward Kizza, a farm manager in Lwemiyaga says that FMD outbreak was reported in Mitima Sub County which he says is far away from Lwemiyaga wondering why people in Lwemiyaga should suffer when their area is free of the disease.

    Mr Paul Kangave, the southern regional police spokesperson said Mr Ssekikubo and six others will be charged with defying quarantine which is contrary to Animal Diseases (Amendment) Act 2005.

    According to Section 7 and Section 29 of Animal Diseases (Amendment) Act 2005, no person shall remove from a place of quarantine any animal, carcass, fodder, wool, butter, ghee or dung except with the sanction of inspecting officer.

    A person who contravenes such rules is liable to a fine not exceeding Shs100, 000 or imprisonment for a period not exceeding a month or both.

    He said they have a letter from the district veterinary department asking police to enforce the ban on transportation and sale of cattle and dairy products in the district.

    “The quarantine affects livestock farmers who are in a radius of 20km and Lwemiyaga is just 7 km away which indicates that it’s also affected,” he said.

    Mr Kangave asked the herdsmen to remain calm until the ban is lifted because, insisting that police will not allow cattle markets to operate when FMD is still a problem in the area.

  • Defying quarantine: Police slap charges against MP Ssekikubo

    Saturday January 11 2020

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    Police in Masaka Sub-region have slapped charges of assault, inciting violence and malicious damage to property against Lwemiyaga County, MP Theodore Ssekikubo.
    The maverick ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM) legislator was arrested Friday morning amid a scuffle between police and herdsmen in Lwemiyaga who attempted to forcefully enter Lwemiyaga cattle market and sell their cows.

    In the ensuing melee, police under the command of Masaka Regional Police Commander, Mr Enock Abaine intercepted the group, arrested Mr Ssekikubo and six other herdsmen, bundled them on a police pick-up. The six herdsmen were taken to Sembabule Police Station while Ssekikubo was locked up at Masaka Central Police Station where they spent a night. The police had a week earlier closed the market on the guidance of district veterinary officials following a reported outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease in the area.

    According to Mr Paul Kangave, the southern regional police spokesperson, the MP will be arraigned in court on Monday to face charges preferred against him.
    “Mr Ssekikubo has been on a warrant of arrest for prior offenses committed including organising a mob to assault vendors supplying milk to dairies in the area last Friday and as it stands now, the Mp will be arraigned in to court together with six other suspects on Monday unless otherwise,” he said.
    Attempts by Buyaga West MP Barnabas Tinkasimire to secure bail for Ssekikubo on Friday evening failed after all police bosses reportedly ignored his telephone calls. By Saturday noon, Ssekikubo was still in police cells at Masaka Central Police Station.

    Mr Kangave said police have registered several complaints from residents in Sembabule who claim that Mr Ssekikubo mobilised suspected goons who have on several occasions assaulted them, and sometimes pour away their milk.
    “The complaints claim they are being accused of continuing to work yet their other colleagues who deal in cattle trade are suffering as a result of the imposed quarantine,” he added.

    Ssekikubo and a section of herdsmen insist some parts of the district like Lwemiyaga were placed under quarantine yet no cases of FMD has been reported in the area. They also disagree with veterinary officials for allowing other people in the said quarantined area to continue selling other dairy products like milk and ghee yet cattle trade was stopped.

    According to Section 7 and Section 29 of Animal Diseases (Amendment) Act 2005, no person shall remove from a place of quarantine any animal, carcass, fodder, wool, butter, ghee or dung except with the sanction of inspecting officer.
    A person who contravenes such rules is liable to a fine not exceeding Shs100, 000 or imprisonment for a period not exceeding a month or both.
    Last year, Dr Elly Muhumuza, the Sembabule District chairperson was arrested and charged with illegal transportation of cattle from quarantined areas in the district.

    editorial@ug.nationmedia.com

  • ‘Problem in Sembabule is caused by politicians’

    Saturday November 06 2010

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    Ssembabule District in general and Lwemiyaga County in particular have been a hotbed of political violence. The county has witnessed the deployment of security personnel in almost every election. During NRM primary elections recently, the entire process was marred by chaos that resulted in the arrest of incumbent MP Theodore Ssekikubo. Risdel Kasasira spoke to Mr Patrick Nkalubo, who contested against Mr Ssekikubo. He was first declared area NRM parliamentary flag bearer and later pronounced as loser. Excerpts:-

    You were announced winner of Lwemiyaga Constituency but a few days later, the former NRM electoral commission chairperson, Felicitus Magomu nullified the results and announced MP Theodore Ssekikubo as winner. What exactly happened?
    I contested against Ssekikubo in Lwemiyaga Constituency in the parliamentary primaries and I won. I got 9,990 votes and he got 9,600.

    I was declared winner by the district returning officer. Later, Ssekikubo made a petition and the elections were nullified by NRM electoral commission chairperson and they declared him the winner with a much bigger margin. The chairperson declared him winner with 15,432 votes which were totally different from the number of votes he got. I petitioned the commission to give the reason as to why I was robbed of victory but up to now, no clear answer has been given.

    I went to the NRM first national chairperson, Mr Moses Kigongo to lodged my complaint. I have gone to so many places; even to the President. Right now, Lwemiyaga Constituency has no flag bearer because Ssekikubo’s name did not appear on the list of flag bearers that was released recently.

    The President sent a team to verify our complaints that the Mayambala Report had left out three villages and in those villages, I had won. I do not know why the electoral commission did not include those three villages. But when the President’s team went there, they found that those three villages actually exist. The electoral commission got the report and I think they will announce me the flag bearer of Lwemiyaga.

    Why has Lwemiyaga County and Sembabule District in general become a hotbed of political violence?
    People have political differences but it should not turn into enmity. Personally, I have no problem with Ssekikubo. I do not hate him. What I want is to work for the people of Lwemiyaga.
    The problem in Sembabule is caused by politicians who use bad language and false accusations to push politics. Whenever there is a problem in Sembabule, you hear Ssekikubo accusing Mr Sam Kutesa, [Foreign Affairs Minister and MP for Mawogola County]. But these are two different constituencies and Mr Kutesa has nothing to do with elections in Lwemiyaga.

    What is the party’s electoral commission saying about the President’s report, and are you in touch with the commission?
    Recently, I went there and I talked to the chairperson. She said that because I went to court, they were waiting for the court to decide. But they are forgetting that I simply went to court because I was opposed to the declaration of Ssekikubo as the flag bearer. But since the commission has realised that it was their mistake, they have withdrawn him from the list.

    There is no reason for me to continue with the court process. I was totally opposed to declaring Ssekikubo with 15,432 votes and the nullification of my results without informing me. I just heard it over the radio.
    These days, I hear Mr Ssekikubo saying he was declared the winner by the chairperson, but he forgets that she used the wrong results to announce him as the winner. She merely used a hand-written paper with no author. But right now, I’m confident that since there is a strong team headed by Mr Kigongo, the problem will soon be solved.

    What if you withdraw from court and Ssekikubo is declared the flag bearer. Will you sue again?
    I have not withdrawn but the reason as to why I have said so is that we took the electoral commission to court because they declared Ssekikubo winner unlawfully. They used results which were not on the tally sheets.

    But we shall withdraw the case if they agree to use the correct results which are on the official tally sheets. If you declare a winner with 15,432 votes and later through your own investigation, find out that you used wrong results, what do you do? You correct the mistakes by using the official tally sheets.

    Who do you think is behind this confusion?
    Really, I do not know. But since there has been an investigating team, they will come out and tell us what happened and who is behind this confusion. It is not only Nkalubo who is suffering. I was voted by the people of Lwemiyaga. They had reasons as to why they voted me, but when we continue to rotate like we are doing, people of Lwemiyaga may be forced to lose confidence in the system.

    If the NRM electoral commission does not announce the flag bearer of Lwemiyaga within a month, what will you do because time is running out?
    The matter is not with the electoral commission. The President has set up his investigation team headed by his chief bodyguard; the Kigongo team has been on the ground.

    I think they will soon solve this issue because they also have work in other constituencies. If Ssekikubo is announced the flag bearer, what will you do?
    That cannot happen because they have been on the ground and found out that the results they used to announce him the winner, were wrong. There is no way you can announce the loser to be the winner and the winner to be the loser. That one is totally impossible.

    rkasasira@ug.nationmedia.com

editorial@ug.nationmedia.com


Mr Ssekikubo indicates that prior to his arrest on Friday, hundreds of residents petitioned Parliament on Tuesday complaining about the persecution by the security Minister disguised in enforcement of quarantine.
According to the MP, enforcing a false quarantine in Lwemiyaga is a deliberate ploy to compel farmers to sell off their livestock at a giveaway price in markets in the neighbouring districts that are already manipulated by Gen Tumwine’s associates.
Geoffrey Muzunga, the Chairperson of Nabitanga Sub County in Sembabule has called for President Museveni’s intervention, arguing that it is going to cripple residents financially without justification.

However, in his rebuttal, General Tumwine described his accusers as hopeless fellows craving for public sympathy after committing offenses.
“All that is hopelessness. He's just trying to be heard or be seen trying to do something. It's not only his area that is under quarantine. The whole of Sembabule District is under quarantine...In a written document regarding why and how quarantine should be managed which was passed by Cabinet, first of all every citizen has a role against anybody who breaks the law. Once an area is declare under quarantine, it is the security forces which enforce,” Gen Tumwine told this reporter in a telephone interview.

He also threatened to drag his accusers to courts of law for maligning his repute with false allegations.
Asked about his role in enforcing the Quarantine in Sembabule District, Gen Tumwime observed he is directly responsible for averting all forms of insecurity including inciting people into violence in his capacity as Security Minister.
“In the case of Ssekikubo, inciting violence is a security matter. Enforcement of the law is by all citizens but of course specifically by security forces. Ssekikubo is breaking the law and order. Police have an obligation and a responsibility to arrest him, charge him and the courts will decide,” he added.


Posecution further alleges that the duo also caused physical injuries to voters and destroyed NRM party property, obstructed police officers on duty and incited violence against Mr Emmanuel Ssekimpi, the former NRM returning officer in Sembabule.

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Police fired teargas to disperse jubilant supporters of Lwemiyaga County MP, Theodore Ssekikubo. PHOTO BY AMBROSE MUSASIZI


Prosecution led by Ms Aminah Akasa had on Monday submitted that Ssekikubo had jumped bail in 2010, which was the basis for denying him bail.

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But Mr Sssejjemba said on Tuesday that after studying both prosecution and accused submissions, he discovered that the lawmaker had not jumped bail.
“Much as the charge sheet is of 2010, it has only one signature and that is mine which I appended yesterday [Monday].Therefore, the accused has never appeared before court, indicating that he has never jumped bail,” the magistrate said.
“Therefore, the accused is granted bail,” he added.
The magistrate said hearing of the case will commence on February 18.
After the chief magistrate’s declaration, a celebratory mood rippled across the fully packed courtyard as the MP’s supporters, who had braved the scorching sun to learn of his fate, punched the air, flashed thumbs-up and broke into songs. Police fired teargas in the jubilant crowd as they attempted to make a procession in Masaka Town.

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Ssekikubo lauded his supporters for being there for him and also commended the magistrate for granting him bail.
Mr Ssekikubo was arrested Friday on grounds that he allegedly mobilised residents to defy a livestock quarantine, re-opened livestock markets and incited violence against law enforcement officers in Sembabule.
Police had a week earlier closed the market following reported outbreak of foot-and –mouth disease in the area.
However, the MP said it was a deliberate ploy by to compel farmers to sell off their livestock at a giveaway price in markets in the neighbouring districts that are already manipulated by a section of businessmen in the region.

editorial@ug.nationmedia.com

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