Two detectives sent to South Africa to repatriate Patrick Agaba, a key suspect in the kidnap and killing of Susan Magara have returned empty handed.
Lawyers of the suspect yesterday secured a court injunction blocking the officers from bringing him back to Uganda shortly before they were due to board a plane.
Agaba, commonly known for cruising around in posh motor vehicles with personalised number plates named ‘Pato’, is alleged to have left the country carrying the ransom money paid by the family of the late Susan Magara to the kidnappers turned killers.
He travelled to South Africa on February 25, just days after the ransom money believed to be 700 million was paid to the kidnappers.
Kidnapped on February 7, Susan Magara’s body was three weeks later found dumped in a swamp between Kajjansi and Kigo along the Entebbe Expressway, in Wakiso district.
The Kampala Metropolitan Criminal Investigations Commander, Johnson Olal and Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Mark Odong, had already been cleared by the government of South Africa to take the suspect but were stopped following a court injunction maintaining the status quo until an application by Agaba contesting his repatriation was heard.
The two senior detectives arrived in the Country on Wednesday night on the same flight they had planned to bring Agaba on.
According to a reliable source who is privy to the Magara death investigations, the detectives returned home as the matter is being resolved in South Africa.
“Am sure we will get him but our guys had to return as the technicalities are being sorted. Those are just technicalities,” the source who preferred anonymity said.
A few days ago, President Yoweri Museveni told the media that he had called the President of South Africa and asked for Patrick Agaba to be arrested.
The Directorate of Public Prosecutions sent a team of lawyers to present a case for Agaba’s repatriation and Uganda was cleared to take the suspect.
Apart from video footage of Agaba passing through the airport, he is implicated by phone call exchanges between two other suspects Bob Kibilango and Ronald Asiimwe also known as Kanyankole.
Since the death of Magara last month, police and the Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence have been running investigations and more than eight suspects have been arrested.
Most of the suspects arrested, who include even relatives of the deceased, are implicated by telephone call records.
Magara, an accountant, was kidnapped on February 7 on Kabaka Anjagala road as she was driving to her home in Lungujja. Her killers first cut off two of her fingers as they pushed the family to pay ransom money.