What you need to know:
- Malende says the attack happened at around 8am, about five kilometres to court, moments after she parked on the roadside due to the heavy morning downpour.
Kampala Woman MP, Shamim Malende said Thursday that she was attacked by three unidentified men who deflated her car tyres along Alex Ssebowa road in Masaka City on her way to Masaka High Court for hearing of her colleagues, Allan Ssewanyana and Muhammad Ssegirinya’s bail application.
Malende says the attack happened at around 8am, about five kilometres to court, moments after she parked on the roadside due to the heavy morning downpour.
“I stopped and parked the car because the road was not clear as it was raining heavily. Moments later, we (Malende and other car occupants) heard someone banging on the car window and thought that maybe they wanted some help. When I lowered it, I saw three men in black raincoats standing near the car but I could not identify them due to the heavy rain,” she said.
Makende said they were too afraid to open the car for the strangers.
Deflated car tyres
“They continued banging the car for some minutes before they disappeared. When it stopped raining, we set off, only to realize that the car was not moving properly. When I stopped to check, two tyres on the driver’s seat had been deflated. We started making frantic phone calls to some people for help. We also received phone calls from some security people and we explained what had happened,” the opposition, National Unity Platform (NUP) member narrated moments after arriving at court.
The MP who is also one of the defence lawyers of Mr Ssewanyana and Mr Ssegirinya says another motorist who happened to be driving by stopped and offered to help call a mechanic for them.
“I think their intention was to scare and also delay us from arriving at court in time. Good enough, some of our colleagues had already arrived at court,” she added.
This reporter could not independently verify the MP’s story as she was yet to report the matter to police by press time.
Ssegirinya, Ssewanyna charges
Prosecution slapped seven criminal charges against the MPs and others alleging that they participated in the recent spate of killings in the Greater Masaka sub region between the months of July and August this year. Close to 30 people lost their lives in the attacks which happened mostly during the night.
On September 23, Mr Ssewanyana was released from Kigo prison upon fulfilling the bail terms but was arrested at the prison gate, forced into a security van infamously referred to as a drone.
Four days later, Mr Ssegirinya was also rearrested in the same manner after being released on bail. They were later jointly charged with another count of murder allegedly committed in Kisekka Sub County in Lwengo District.
MP Nambooze house invasion
Meanwhile, Ms Malende’s alleged attack comes two days after police said on Tuesday that they were investigating a case in which an unidentified man broke into her Mukono Municipality counterpart, Betty Nambooze’s house early morning.
The assailant, who police described as tall, dark-skinned and putting on a suit jacket, is said to have gained access to MP’s home at Nakabago cell, Ntawo ward, Central Division, Mukono Municipality at around 6am and went straight to her bedroom.
“The bedroom was open at the time because she was planning to go for a meeting at Parliament. It is alleged that the Honourable Member of Parliament made an alarm and her husband Bakireke came to her rescue by grabbing the man pushing him outside. The suspect later escaped and jumped onto a motorcycle waiting for him outside as witnessed by some neighbours,” ASP Luke Owoyesigyire, the deputy Kampala Metropolitan police spokesperson said on Tuesday.