How woman found in septic tank was killed

Friday September 17 2021
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Immaculate Mary Blessing Asio’s remains are handed over to relatives at the City Mortuary in Mulago, Kampala yesterday. Photo/Promise Twinamukye.

By Benson Tumusiime

The postmortem report on the body of Immaculate Mary Blessing Asio, 62, has revealed that she was hit on the head with a blunt object that cracked the skull causing her death.

 Asio was reported missing by her husband on January 6.

Nine months later, police retrieved her body from a septic tank at their marital home on Dr Kaggwa Rise Road in Munyonyo, a Kampala suburb.

Police detectives later arrested her husband, Mr Francis Onebe, a veteran accountant and auditor, and a former security guard of the family, who disappeared soon after Asio went missing.

Police yesterday handed over the body of the deceased to her family after positive identification that the remains were hers.

According to the source, the DNA of the remains matched with those of Ivy Mildred Inapo, the daughter of Asio.

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The police spokesperson, Mr Fred Enanga, said:  “The reason why police handed over the body to the family of the deceased is that we got DNA sample of the remains and the results came out indicating that the deceased was wife of Francis Onebe.”

He added: “Now our main interest is to place the suspect to crime scene, how did the body come to his septic tank and what was the cause of murder.”

Detectives yesterday recorded a charge and caution from Mr Onebe.

The murder file is to be submitted to the Director of Public Prosecutions today to advice.

On Tuesday, family and other sources close to the inquiries told this newspaper that Asio faced physical brutality and at times relocated to live in a rented home in Buziga, another Kampala suburb close to their marital home in Munyonyo.

Her troubles stretched for years, but worsened from December 2019, and she began documenting the torture that she endured at the hands of unnamed family members and the imminent risk she faced.

In one entry on December 3, 2019, Ms Asio pleaded that “let all that I have struggled together be safe one day when I am gone”.

She was the chief executive of Pentagon Security Services Ltd, which reportedly employs up to 5,000 private guards. Asio also owned another business in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, where she commuted regularly.

“Every day I feel I am not safe yet in my own house. I know they don’t like me after my struggling (sic) as a house wife for all these years? Why do you hate me like this, my dear?” one of Ms Asio’s entries reads in parts, a family member who accessed her diary said.

Slightly a month after her December 2019 entry, Ms Asio was more explicit in an entry made on January 21, 2020 that she titled, difficult life full of threats and uncertainty.

In it, she said that “even after finishing my successful wedding, things have never changed. I laboured to organise myself, but no one can appreciate my efforts.”

“My business and hard work seem to have brought me problems with dia (sic) ones. I sleep out, but sleep cannot come. I sleep while fearing for my life. What did I do in this world that has caused me all these worries?” she wrote.

Background

Asio went missing in January 6, at a time when security agencies were arresting people suspected to have participated in the November 2020 protests in Kampala over the arrest of presidential candidate Robert Kyagulanyi in Luuka District.

Her family said she had been arrested in a similar case after CCTV showed a Toyota HiAce, popularly known as Drone, driving by her shortly before she disappeared.

The drones, have of resent been used by security operatives to carry out their activities.

Mr Onebe also said he had been called by unidentified security operatives, who told him that they would dump Asio on the roadside or she would appear at a military court.

After nine months of fruitless searching, the body of MS Onebe was found in a septic tank at her home.

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