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Three NRM MPs Charged With Corruption, Remanded To Luzira Prison

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By Hason Mutunzi Bwambale

Kampala, Uganda – In a significant blow to the ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM), three of its MPs have been charged with corruption and remanded to Luzira prison. The lawmakers, Lwengo District Woman MP Cissy Dioniza Namujju, Bunyole East MP Yusuf Mutembuli, and Busiki county MP Paul Akamba, appeared before the Nakasero-based Anti-corruption court on Tuesday.

Chief Magistrate Joan Aciro presided over the court session, where the MPs were charged with soliciting a bribe from Mariam Wangadya, the Chairperson of the Uganda Human Rights Commission. The offense of corruption attracts a 10-year jail term or a fine of UGX 4.8 million, or both.

According to the prosecution, Akamba and Namujju solicited an undue advantage of 20% of the anticipated enhanced commission budget for the financial year 2024/2025 on May 13 at Hotel Africana in Kampala. The MPs allegedly demanded the bribe from Wangadya in exchange for their support in securing the budget allocation.

The court heard that the MPs exploited their positions to solicit the bribe, abusing their authority and violating the public’s trust. The prosecution presented evidence showing that the MPs engaged in a corrupt agreement, contrary to section 2(a) of the Anti-Corruption Act, 2009.

The MPs’ legal team requested bail, citing their constitutional right to presumption of innocence until proven guilty. However, the prosecution objected, arguing that the MPs posed a flight risk and might interfere with witnesses if released on bail.

Chief Magistrate Aciro ruled in favor of the prosecution, remanding the MPs to Luzira prison until the next court session. The ruling sent a strong message that corruption will not be tolerated, even among high-ranking officials.

This development comes as a significant embarrassment to the NRM party, which has faced numerous corruption scandals in recent years. The party’s leadership has repeatedly pledged to combat corruption, but critics argue that the rhetoric has not translated into action.

The arrest and charging of the three MPs demonstrate the Anti-Corruption Court’s commitment to tackling graft, regardless of political affiliation. As the case proceeds, Ugandans will be watching closely to see if justice will be served.

In the meantime, the MPs will remain in custody, a stark reminder that corruption has consequences, even for those in positions of power.

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