State Withdraws Charges of Inciting Violence Against Hajj Kiyimba, Son

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Kampala, Uganda:- The Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), Jane Frances Abodo, has withdrawn charges of inciting violence against businessman and politician Abdul Kiyimba and his son, Hamza Kiyimba. The charges were previously being heard at the Law Development Center Court.

Abdul Kiyimba, the former mayor of Kyengera town council, and his son were accused of inciting violence on November 24, 2023, at Gadaffi Mosque in Old Kampala.

The allegations stated that Kiyimba, with the intent to intimidate and annoy, threatened to kill or injure Ashiraf Zziwa and officials of the Uganda Muslim Supreme Council (UMSC).

Further accusations included that on the same day, during Juma prayers at Old Kampala Mosque, Kiyimba and his son incited violence against Mufti Sheikh Shaban Ramathan Mubajje.

The prosecution claimed Kiyimba shouted, “Where is Mubajje? I want Mubajje,” while advancing towards him, prompting the Muslim congregation to rise and potentially attack Mubajje for allegedly selling Muslim land.

As a result, Kiyimba and his son were arrested and charged with the cited crimes before they got released on bail after pleading innocence.

Last week when the matter came up for hearing before grade one magistrate Martins Kirya, state attorney Maureen Tusiime informed the court that the DPP had signed a document withdrawing the charges against Kiyimba and his son.

“The DPP wishes to withdraw charges of threatening violence and inciting violence against A1 Abdul Kiyimba and A2 Hamuza Kiyimba. I pray to tend in the said nolle prosequi withdrawing the two charges of threatening violence and inciting violence,” said Tusiime.

Consequently, the magistrate was left with no choice but to endorse the withdrawal and go ahead to set Kiyimba and his son free unless held on other charges. He also ordered that each be given a refund of their bail monies worth Shs 1 million.

Kiyimba’s troubles stemmed from his alleged involvement in protesting the November 16, 2023 order by the Commercial Court registrar Catherine Agwero in which she authorized businessman Justus Kyabahwa, to sell eight properties belonging to UMSC to recover the Shs 18.9 billion debt.

Kyabahwa sought compensation for land in Sembabule district. According to the sale agreement, Kyabahwa had paid Shs 3.5 billion to UMSC for the property. However, a dispute arose when Kyabahwa employed individuals without UMSC’s knowledge to forcefully evict squatters from the land, leading to destruction and subsequent legal action against UMSC by the squatters, a case still awaiting final judgment.

As a result, in June 2023, Kyabahwa sued UMSC, demanding Shs 18.9 million in compensation, a move that UMSC says deprived them of an opportunity to defend itself adequately.

Despite expressing dissatisfaction and initiating an appeal, UMSC says it faced rapid and unfavourable judgments from the High Court, allowing execution orders to attach their properties for debt recovery within 30 days, even amidst pending appeals at the Court of Appeal.

Kiyimba was then arrested by the security personnel who were deployed at the Old Kampala Mosque as he and other people were protesting an advert for the sale of Muslim property where Kyabahwa wanted to recover his money following the ‘fake’ land transaction.

President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni intervened and stopped the attachment, saying reason in this case, common sense and reasoning had to prevail over legality.

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