The Anti-corruption Court Grade One Magistrate Albert Asiimwe has directed that phones confiscated from Bank of Uganda officials prior to their arrest over inflated pallets containing money should be returned before Court determines the next course.
Asiimwe also said it was unfair for the suspects to be denied their right to communication.
“In this existing circumstance, I direct the prosecution, the prosecutor and the entire department in the personal conduct of the matter to follow up the matter and report to this court the whereabouts of these phones,” Asiimwe ordered.
On April 27, 2019, a charterd cargo plane arrived at Entebbe Airport carrying 20 pallets containing cash and destined for BOU. These were received, intact and well-sealed. However, the BOU team at the airport also noticed five extra cargo pallets on board the chartered plane.
Following the anomalies detected, BoU governor Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile called for investigations into the matter which led to the arrest of the three Bank of Uganda officials, Charles Malinga director Currency, Francis Kaketo the branch manager and his assistant Fred Wanyama, who have since been denied bail and ordered to report back on August 28.
Asiimwe’s directives follow defence lawyer Joseph Kyazze’s application for an order to force Lt Col. Edith Nakalema of State House Ant-Corruption Unit and the Director of Criminal Investigation Directorate (CID) Grace Akullo to produce his client’s phones.
“We need to get a response. We shouldn’t do investigations as if it’s a do or die affair, let it be a proper investigation if the phones are relevant it’s ok we are fine with that but let’s know that they have them,” said Samuel Ojoku, one of the defence lawyers.