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HomeNews"I did not kill my Husband" - says Molly Katanga

“I did not kill my Husband” – says Molly Katanga

The key suspect in the murder of businessman Henry Katanga, his wife Molly Katanga, has denied the charges, saying she understood well the offenses read against her but it is not true that she committed the offense. This was before the High Court Criminal Division presided over by Justice Isaac Muwata when the matter came up for hearing today.

The Court has heard that on November 2, 2023, at Mbuya, Chwa II, in Nakawa Division, with malice aforethought, Molly Katanga killed her husband.

All the accused persons implicated in the murder of businessman Henry Katanga all denied charges against them.

Molly’s two daughters Patricia Kankwanzi and Martha Nkwanzi  with whom she is jointly charged denied charges of destroying and tampering with valuable  evidence that would  have been used in the judicial trial to prove the  murder of their father.

On the other hand, the family’s shamba boy George Amanyire and a nursing officer Charles Otai, have been charged with being an accessory. They have also denied.

Prior to this, the court stood over proceedings to look for a Rutoro language interpreter after one of the accused persons. Amanyire said he prefers the trial to be conducted in Rutoro, a language he understands best.

Later, a VIP female body guard Advance Ayesigwa attached to the Counter Terrorism of Police was brought as the interpreter for proceedings to continue.

The Prosecution was led by Samalie Wakoli Assistant Director of Public Prosecutions, Chief States Attorney Jonathan Muwaganya and Annah Kiiza.

Several lawyers who included the  Former Deputy Attorney General Mwesigwa Rukutana, Brian Rubaihayo and Edgar Ayebazibwe were at court on a watching brief.

The court again took a second break after the Prosecutor Wakooli asked to amend the charge sheet so that it can be aligned properly with the sections governing the Trial and Indictments Act. Wakooli asked for some few minutes to allow her include in the charge sheet the exact evidence that was tampered with by Molly’s co accused and also to add them (co accused) on new counts.

However, when Court resumed after the second break,  the Prosecution informed the Court  that they wanted Molly’s co accused to each appear on two charges of destroying evidence and also of being an accessory after the fact of murder.  The accused each has one count at the moment.

However in response, the accused person’s lawyers including Macdusman Kabega, Bruce Musinguzi Ellison Karuhanga and Peter Kabatsi who led them objected to the amendment.

Kabatsi said they had no objection to the supply of the items that were destroyed as well as the clarification sought to be made in the third count of being an accessory after the fact of murder. However , they objected to charging  their clients  on a new offense which they  were not committed to face in the  court.

“In other wards, a person who was not properly charged and committed to the high court cannot be smuggled in”, said Kabatsi.

The lawyers argued that there shall be no alterations to  an indictment or else it would be prejudicial and hence an injustice to the accused persons.

They prayed that the amendment and  subsequent alteration is rejected adding that the amendment of charges cannot happen at this stage.

However, in response, the Prosecution insisted that amendment  happens at any stage and the merits of this case require them to do so. According to Wakooli, it will meet the ends of justice if the amendment is allowed.

“My lord, there is no injustice that will be occasioned even trial hasn’t started. Secondly my lord,  the exception read is of the evidence is not disclosed in the summary. The summary is already on the court record which the accused are privy to,” said Wakooli.

Meanwhile Molly has asked to be tried via zoom saying that she gets hardships climbing stairs while coming to the High Court room. The court has no ramps for people who use wheel chairs.

But in response, the Judge Muwata indicated that they have not yet decided on who should be charged,  and who shouldn’t on some charges and thus advised her to return tomorrow for his ruling on the matter.

Molly who was wheeled to Court in a wheel chair by the Safety and Security Unit-SSU the elite force of the prison services, remains on remand at Luzira Women’s Prison while her co-accused were granted bail about four months ago.

Shortly after the shooting of Katanga, his wife Molly was found covered in a pool of blood under unclear circumstances before she was rushed to International Hospital Kampala -IHK where the court records indicate she underwent five major surgeries on her head.

Molly was hospitalized for about two months prior to her production in Nakawa Chief Magistrates Court which committed her to the High Court for trial.

She made attempts to be temporarily released on bail without success on two separate occasions.

The first was on April 9th, 2024  when the trial Judge  Muwata denied Molly bail on grounds of  failure to prove exceptional circumstances which mainly included that there was no medical report from Prison to show that her condition cannot be managed.

Consequently,  Molly  made a second bail application  in which  the Uganda Prisons Service  on April 15th 2024 carried  out another medical Examination and stated that  the assessment and monitoring of Molly’s illnesses was  beyond their capacity.

The evidence before the Court indicates that Molly was found to suffer from hypertension with multiple breast masses, paranasal sinusitis, vertigo, and post-traumatic stress disorder.

According to the Doctors in prison, the findings of the reevaluation of Molly revealed that she “has not received trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and no follow-up services by an ENT surgeon to address her paranasal sinusitis and vertigo as recommended on the treatment plan from Mulago National Hospital in their report dated February 8th, 2024.

The decision to deny Molly bail has since been challenged in the East African Court of Justice by a a Democracy and Human Rights Watchdog , Legal Brains Trust which is headed by renowned City lawyer Isaac Ssemakadde.

However, when Court resumed after the second break,  the Prosecution informed the Court  that they wanted Molly’s co accused to each appear on two charges of destroying evidence and also of being an accessory after the fact of murder.  The accused each has one count at the moment.

The case has been adjourned to July 3rd 2024.

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