The shs24 billion Kyetume-Katosi road scam is among the cases on the menu as the Court of Appeal today, Thursday kicks off the hearing of 50 criminal appeals in a period of three weeks.
The session will be presided over by Deputy Chief Justice, Richard Buteera and Justices; Elizabeth Musoke and Cheborion Barishaki.
During the session, the judges will hear an appeal by the IGG against the acquittal of former Minister of Works and Transport, Eng. Abraham Byandala and three others named in the Mukono-Katosi road scam.
The Anti-Corruption Court in 2018 acquitted Byandala, the former UNRA acting executive director Eng. Berunado Ssebbugga Kimeze, Marvin Baryaruha(former UNRA legal boss) and Isaac Mugote, a former staffer at Housing Finance Bank of any wrong doing in the Shs24 billion Kyetume- Katosi road saga but the IGG has since appealed against the same.
The court will equally hear an appeal by Joe Ssemugooma and two others who are appealing against their conviction by the Anti-Corruption Court.
The anti- corruption court convicted and sentenced Apollo Ssenkeeto, who purported to be the country representative for Eutaw Construction Company, Joe Ssemugooma, the former director of finance and administration at UNRA and Wilberforce Ssenjako, the former regional accountant for UNRA to 10 and five years’ imprisonment.
“Ssenkeeto was the architect of this scam with his American friends and if this was a play, he would be the protagonist. He needs salvation because his manipulations forced many people to lose jobs in UNRA. If Ssemugooma and Ssenjako had nipped the bud in the knee, the scam would have collapsed at tendering stage and Eutaw would have been disqualified at the same stage due to presenting fake securities,” Justice Lawrence Gidudu said during the sentence.
“They were gatekeepers who would have locked out the bogus bid by properly verifying the bid securities but they didn’t do it. A non-custodial sentence would only be a mockery of justice and a simple part on their back yet they cause a big loss to government.”
The trio is however currently out on bail pending the outcome of their appeal.
According to the registrar in charge of the criminal registry at the Court of Appeal, Mary Kaitesi, most of the appeals to be handled during this session are those in respect to aggravated defilement convictions which are 17 as well as murder(17).
Others cases to be handled by the Court of Appeal include aggravated robbery(9), rape(2), malicious damage(2)and forgery(1)