David Mpanga, a lawyer representing the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) leader, Kizza Besigye has asked Kasangati Magistrates court to acquit his client without defending himself. Mpanga argues that prosecution had failed to prove its case against Besigye.
Mpanga made his submissions of no case to answer before Magistrate George Watyekere at Kasangati court today. Besigye is facing charges of rioting after a proclamation and inciting violence in connection to the walk to work protests, which he has since denied.
In his submission, Mpanga argued that the three state witnesses had failed to prove that Besigye rioted after proclamation and also incited violence among his supporters, who allegedly pelted stones at police on April 14th 2011, along Gayaza-Kampala Road.
Mpanga told court that a proclamation must be made in the President’s name as the law requires. He observed that the charges preferred against his client were not made using the president’s name as claimed by the prosecution.
On inciting violence, Mpanga argued that none of the three state witnesses in their testimonies claimed to have seen Besigye incite his supporters to pelt stones at the police and other road users. With this, Mpanga asked court to acquit his client because the state failed to prove its case.
Today, the prosecution led by Ivan Nkwasibwe closed its case after producing three police officers as witnesses. The officers are Kira Road DPC, James Ruhweza, Kampala metropolitan CID chief, Paul Kato and Detective assistant Inspector of police, David Nanju of Kasangati police station.
Nkwasibwe asked court to compel Besigye to defend himself because the prosecution had proved that he incited violence and rioting after a proclamation.
The trial magistrate, George Watyekere has set Tuesday of next week to give his verdict on whether to ask Besigye to defend the allegations against him or acquit him. On the same day, the Magistrate will also rule on whether or not Besigye has a case to answer in another matter, where he is charged with failing to obey traffic orders.