Village chairman, four others arrested over attacking pastor’s farm

KIKUUBE-Police in Kikuube district are holding five suspects who allegedly incited the residents to attack the farm belonging to Pastor George Baguma of Bwera Miracle Church in Kyangwali Sub County, Kikuube district, killing 40 cows as well as burning four houses.

The suspects have been identified as Godwin Munanura the chairman LCI for Bwela village, Nelson Muhairwe, George Kamuhanda, Aston Muhwezi, a land surveyor, and Karen Kembabazi, village women council chairperson.

The suspects with many others still at large committed the crime on Wednesday after officers of State House Land Protection Unit evicted encroachers on Baguma’s farm.

Baguma is feuding with his brother Kamihanda and Muhwezi who he accused of mobilising a group of over 200 encroachers on his 300 acres piece of land, to attack his farm.

Residents first blocked the road for hours to stop the State House Land protection unit officials from taking their colleagues prompting them to fire live bullets in the air to disperse them.

Amlan Tumusiime, the Kikuube Resident District Commissioner [RDC] told journalists on Friday afternoon that security operatives had managed to arrest the five suspects now being detained at Kikuube Central Police Station.

The RDC said they were still hunting for more than 20  suspects believed to have participated in the killing of the cows and torching the houses on Baguma’s farm.

He said Uganda Police and the Uganda People’s Defence Forces officers have been deployed in the area to keep peace.

Muhwezi who spoke to Journalists before his arrest on Thursday said that Pastor Baguma’s brother Kamihanda sold him the land, adding the case about the matter is before the court. He alleged that Baguma was using the police and other security agencies to victimise the residents.

Pastor Baguma has been battling murder charges which were dropped by Director of Public Prosecutions [DPP], Jane Frances Abodo in January this year.

Baguma was being accused of having a hand in the murder of John Turyamureba, a resident in the same area. It was alleged that Baguma connived with Turyamureba’s wife Stephanie Uwimana and her sons Richard Musinguzi, and James Twekabe to commit the crime.

Others implicated in the murder of Turyamureba are Samuel Mugisha, Alloys Habineza, John Mbabazi, and Jackson Tushabomwe.  The accused belong to Baguma’s church.

The DPP dropped the charges as there was no substantial evidence to pin the suspects.

But residents rejected the DPP’s ruling DPP’s decision and accused Baguma of bribing the officer who handled the case.

Aston Muhwezi and other residents claimed that their witness was bribed to change his statement. They expressed their discontentment against the DPP’s decision to drop the case against the suspects, saying they will continue pushing the case.

However, Pastor Baguma continues to deny allegations of murder, saying that the residents are framing such that they can take over his land.

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