Novelist Kakwenza Charged, Remanded To Kitalya Prison

Novelist Kakwenza Is Safe In Exile- US Based journalist Reveals, Set For Online Interview

By Uganda Online Media

President Yoweri Museveni has appointed Maj Tom Magambo who has been in the Internal Security Organisations(ISO) as the new police Criminal Investigations Director.

“President Museveni has promoted Private Tom Magambo to the rank of Major and appointed him Director Criminal Investigations of the Uganda Police Force,” the acting UPDF spokesperson, Lt Col Ronald Kakurungu said in a statement.

Kampala: Buganda Road Magistrate’s Court has charged and remanded satirical novelist Kakwenza Rukirabashaija who was arrested in December last year, to Kitalya Prison until January 21 when he will return to court for further mention of the charges.

Kakwenza was arrested on December 28, 2021, for allegedly making abusive, derogatory, and belittling tweets against President Museveni and his son, Lt Gen Muhoozi Kainerugaba who is also the UPDF commander of land forces.

Since his arrest, Kakwenza had not been arraigned before any court despite various calls by human rights defenders to either produce and charge him before a court of law or release him unconditionally.

This prompted High Court on Monday to order police and other security agencies to produce Kakwenza in court dead or alive thus bringing him to Buganda Road Magistrate’s Court today at around 9 am. 

Buganda Road Court Magistrate Judge Douglas Singiza read to Kakwenza two counts of offensive communication, C/S 25 of the computer misuse act 2011 to which he pleaded “not guilty” before being remanded to Kitalya Prison.

Rukirabashaija has been repeatedly arrested since “The Greedy Barbarian” was published. He has said he was tortured while being interrogated by military intelligence about his work. At the time, he was accused of breaching Covid-19 social distancing rules, inciting violence and promoting sectarianism.

He described his time in detention as “inhumane and degrading” in his most recent book “Banana Republic: Where Writing is Treasonous”.

Meanwhile, in October 2021, Kakwenza was awarded as the winner of International Writer of Courage at the PEN Pinter Prize function. This annual award is normally presented to a person who has been persecuted for speaking out about their beliefs.

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