UGANDA, Namisindwa | Real Muloodi News | Michael Naboya Kitutu, the brother of Karamoja Affairs Minister Mary Gorreti Kitutu Kimono, is seeking to have his case file transferred to the High Court.
He is facing charges alongside his sister and her Personal Assistant, Joshua Abaho, in the Anti-Corruption Court, for their alleged involvement in an iron sheets scandal.
During the court session on Thursday, Chief Magistrate Joan Aciro was updated on the progress of the investigations.
According to the prosecution, between June 2022 and January 2023, at the Office of the Prime Minister’s Stores in Namanve, Mukono District, Kitutu is accused of causing the loss of public property.
The charges stem from the alleged diversion of 9,000 prepainted iron sheets, originally intended for the benefit of the Karamoja Community Empowerment Program.
It is alleged that Kitutu diverted these sheets for personal gain, as well as for the benefit of third parties, knowingly leading to the loss of the said property.
In January 2023, Kitutu and her Personal Assistant, Abaho, are further accused of diverting an additional 5,500 iron sheets for unrelated purposes, which were subsequently received by third parties.
Abaho, who was responsible for the safekeeping of the sheets, is implicated in the diversion. Naboya, Kitutu’s brother, is alleged to have received 100 pieces of the diverted iron sheets in Namisindwa District.
During the court session, State Attorney Jonathan Muwaganya informed Chief Magistrate Aciro that investigations were still underway and requested an additional two weeks to conclude them.
The defence lawyers representing the accused did not object to the adjournment.
However, Aciro noted that she had received a letter from Naboya’s lawyers, requesting the transfer of the case file to the High Court.
She clarified that the correct procedure would be for the High Court to write to the Deputy Registrar, who would then inform the Chief Magistrate to transfer the file.
The file is required in the High Court for an application in which Naboya challenges the territorial jurisdiction of the Anti-Corruption Court.
His lawyers argue that the alleged crime took place in Namisindwa, and thus, he should be tried in a court near where the offences were committed, rather than in Kampala.
The case has been adjourned to June 15, 2023, and the bail of Kitutu, Naboya, and Abaho has been extended until then.
The Anti-Corruption Court, established in July 2008 as a special division of the court, possesses unlimited jurisdiction to hear corruption-related cases from both the private and public sectors throughout Uganda.
Although the court is currently based in Kampala, it has the flexibility to relocate and hold sessions in different regions of the country to address cases from various areas.
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