UPDF officer, LDUs charged with murder of 65-year-old man in Oyam

Monday July 06 2020
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UPDF operations commander Lance Corporal Geoffrey Ogwang, Pt Jolly Thomas Opoka and Pt Felix Okumu (both LDU personnel) appeared before the court sitting at Amati Primary School, Kamdini Sub-county in Oyam District on July 3, 2020. PHOTO BY ISAAC OTWII

The Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) 5th Division Court-Martial on Friday pressed charges of murder against two Local Defence Unit personnel and a UPDF officer accused of killing a 65-year-old man.
Pt Jolly Thomas Opoka, Pt Felix Okumu (both LDU personnel) and their operations commander, Lance Corporal Geoffrey Ogwang (UPDF), appeared before the court sitting at Amati Primary School, Kamdini Sub-county in Oyam District. The court, chaired by Col Paul Omara, charged the suspects with murder and remanded them to Loro Prison as proceedings continue.
Prosecution led by Lt Alex Rasto Mukhwana told court that the accused persons, with malice aforethought, caused the death of Francis Ogwang Munu, who was a resident of Amati Parish.

Ogwang died on June 27 after he was allegedly beaten by members of the security team who were enforcing curfew.
A witness told court that on the fateful day, he had moved to his hotel to look for food but the soldiers found him and stabbed him with a gun bayonet.
“After beating us, they asked us to take them to the leader of the trading centre. They helped to support the deceased to move since he was bleeding but on reaching the leader of the trading centre, he became unconscious,” the witness recounted.
Another witness said the soldiers numbering about six also beat other people who were carrying out their businesses at the trading centre.

“It was at around 5pm when they came in a white tipper lorry. They were six in number. Three of them went where the deceased was while the other three started beating up people on the road,” he said.
Court also heard that the deceased died shortly after he was taken to a nearby clinic.
Prosecution has so far produced three witnesses in the first court sitting. The court will deliver its final ruling today.