Witness pins UPDF officer on killing colleague

Max Omutojo appears before the Court Martial in 2020. PHOTO/URN

What you need to know:

  • The case was adjourned to March 21 for further hearing.

The army court has charged a UPDF soldier who shot dead a colleague at a briefing at Nakasongola Air Force Wing.

Lance CPL Max Omutojo was charged before Makindye General Court Martial on Monday with murder of Maj Suleiman Wafula and injuring and assaulting Lt Sam Drichi Chandiga.

The officer accused Maj Wafula of refusing to give him a movement order to take his family back to Kumi District in May 2020 during the Covid-19 imposed lockdown.

Prosecution states that on May 3, 2020, as Maj Wafula was briefing his juniors under a tree, Lance CPL Omutojo allegedly came late for work and requested to join the parade, which  was granted.

Later CPL Omutojo requested for permission to take his family to the village.
It’s alleged that Maj Wafula inquired to know how that was going to be possible since public transport had been suspended.

This did not go down well with CPL Omutojo, who was quoted by Lt Drichi, one of the survivors of the shooting,  to have lamented of how the deceased officer was always deploying him and keeping him away from his family.

The witness then told court that the two parties resolved that he would get permission the following day (Monday); and that he went to sign for his rifle.

In his testimony, Lt Drichi told the army court that at the time of his death, Maj Wafula was urging his juniors to exercise discipline if they are to stay longer in the army. 

Wafula was slated to retire from the forces in July the same year.
The witness further told the seven-member court chaired by Lt Gen Andrew Gutti that he was shot at thrice by the accused officer, in the arms and in the right ribs as he was trying to calm the situation.

The case was adjourned to March 21 for further hearing.