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UPDF Soldier Jailed 70 Years for Murdering Fort Portal Woman :: Uganda Radionetwork
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UPDF Soldier Jailed 70 Years for Murdering Fort Portal Woman

According to evidence adduced in court, the accused person was found in possession of the deceased's phone in which he had placed his personal sim cards just 2 days after she was murdered.
15 Feb 2022 14:00
Francis Mugisa Afatum in a UPDF uniform and TOM Etolim in Red before the court martial in Muhooti barracks fort portal (2)

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The Mountain Division Court Martial has sentenced Private Francis Mugisa aka Afatum to 70 years in prison for murdering one Cate Tukugiize, a former resident of Binanata B cell in Kitumba ward in central division - Fort Portal city. 

The Mountain Division court chairman Colonel Roger Okiror also handed another sentence of 50 years to Mugisa for aggravated robbery but which will run concurrently with the murder sentence.

Prosecution told court that unknown people while disguising as clients invaded Tukugiizes shop where she was operating a bar business on 24 may 2021 at night and later turned against the deceased, strangling her to death and robbing her properties including a jerrycan of waragi, a woofer worth 500,000, her mobile phone and an unspecified amount of money.

According to evidence adduced in court, the accused person was found in possession of the deceased's phone in which he had placed his personal sim cards just 2 days after she was murdered.

Guy Chalice, a private phone tracker working with Fort portal police station testified that he had been contracted by the family of the deceased to track the phone of the deceased ,after family members continued receiving death threats from unknown people prohibiting them from following up on the case.

Guy also told court that while tracking the phone they discovered that Mugisa’s phone number had been placed in the same phone on 27th & 28th may 2021 just a few days after the gruesome murder of Tukugiize.

It was against this background that police and the CMI conducted an operation that led to the arrest of Mugisa aka Afatoum in Kasojo village of Kiko town council in Kabarole district where he was hiding.

According to the postmortem report conducted by a police pathologist the deceased had died of ligature strangulation after an object had been used to squeeze life out of her through the neck though there were no clues to attach the same to the suspect for having participated in the gruesome act.

However according to ASP Seth Bwambale who had charged the suspect at Fort Portal police station in a different case,  the convict had engaged in a number of crimes in the region and he had not denied to using and being in possession of the properties {phone} of the deceased after her death.

It was with back ground that court chairman Cornel Okiror sentenced Private Mugisa to 70 years in prison for murder and 50 years on aggravated robbery, both sentences to be served concurrently, saying the evidence produced by the witness was overwhelming.

He said the convict being a serving UPDF officer he was mandated to protect the life of citizens, which he did not and also put the reputation of UPDF in disrepute before the public which is not the case in reality.

The same court found Tom Ekolin a clause friend to Mugisa not guilty of murder, after the defense lawyer Lt George William Kabanda said that the charging officer at Uganda police, Fort Portal had only based on assumption that Ekolin was a friend to Mugisa hence incriminating him without providing proof that he participated in the murder of the deceased.

However, he was found guilty of participating in aggravated robbery with Mugisa on a different file when they attacked one Emmy Karungi, a business woman in Mugusu town council  Kabarole district.

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Cornel Roger Okiror told URN shortly after the court session that Private Mugisa had engaged in many heinous crimes ranging from murder, armed robbery in Ntoroko on Rwebisengo Road, the stealing of a government gun from the 6th battalion in Kasese, rape of victims, desertion among other serious cases.

He said the sentence of 70 years in prison will act as a deterrent measure to other soldiers who intend to engage in similar crimes.

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