What you need to know:
- The trial judge Susan Okalany was prompted to order Uganda Prisons Services to provide a report after a request by Kiyemba’s lawyer who reasoned that the suspect’s conversation with him is uncoordinated.
The International Crimes Division (ICD) of the High Court has ordered for a mental assessment report of the former Guantanamo Bay detainee, Jamal Kiyemba,43, alias Abdullah, alias Tonny Kiyemba.
The trial judge Susan Okalany was prompted to order Uganda Prisons Services to provide a report after a request by Kiyemba’s lawyer who reasoned that the suspect’s conversation with him is uncoordinated.
“Your honour my client since he has been in different prisons for so long including Guantanamo Bay in Cuba. His conversation with me is uncoordinated. Although some time back he was taken to Butabika National Mental Referral Hospital for treatment, the prison authority should carry out an assessment report on him to observe his status if at all he still needs medication,” Mr Geoffrey Turyamusiima submitted.
Justice Okalany concurred with the defence lawyer’s submission which has been unopposed since prosecution was not even represented in court. He adjourned the court case to October 5, with an order that prison authorities turn up with the assessment report.
The court presided by Justice Alice Komuhangi Khaukha in May 2023 confirmed charges of rendering support to a terrorist group, belonging or professing to belong to a terrorist group and soliciting or inviting support for a terrorist organization against Kiyemba before forwarding his file to another judge for trial.
Prosecution contends that Kiyemba and others still at large, between 2021 and January this year in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Uganda belonged or professed to belong to ADF, a terrorist organization.
Kiyemba, a former Imam for Masjid Taqwa Zzana, Kirimanyaga Zone, Makindye Ssabagabo in Wakiso District was deported to Uganda from the United Kingdom after his citizenship was withdrawn following allegations of participating in terror activities.
He then allegedly got involved with the ADF in Uganda and DRC. It is further alleged that in January, he went to the Old Taxi Park in Kampala and rallied people to support the rebel outfit.
According to police records, Kiyemba was born in Uganda and he converted to Islam at the age of 20 before changing his name to Jamal Abdullah. He moved with his family to the UK following the death of his father in 1993.
He was later arrested in 2002 by the US army near Peshawar in Pakistan after allegedly trying to enter Afghanistan in the company of a probable al-Qaeda operative, and a low-level jihadist’.
He had lived in the UK for eight years before travelling to Pakistan.