Gen KAYUMBA NYAMWASA'S CASE PROVES TO BE WATERTIGHT. 301860_213470075427867_100002946299199_385640_1395779993_n-300x168

Jeppe Magistrate Court, Johannesburg

Johannesburg – The case in which the state accuses Armani Uriwani ( accused 1) together with  the rest of five accused with conspiracy to murder and attempted murder, preceded today with trial within a trial where the defence alleges duress into the making of confessions  by accused 1 that resulted into the arrest of the rest of the accused. The prosecutor opened the session by calling to the witness stand col Zwane George Mohlame  to the court and after went on to lead evidence.

While on stand the investigating officer Col mohlame explained how he took over the case right from the 26th of June 2010 and how he conducted investigations and obtained statements from all the six (6) accused following all the right procedures in order not to violet their rights, and how he thereafter asked them if they could repeat what they had just told him to a magistrate or to the justice of peace and how he went on to explain what justice of peace meant. They confirmed that they understood.
After the prosecutor leading the evidence, the defence team started cross examining the witness (col mohlame). What the defence seemed to want to establish was that the accused number one  ( Arman Uriwani )together with accused number two ( sadi) were assaulted and promised to turn state witnesses if they helped the state  to bring the perpetrators to book  of which the  witness Col Mohlame denied and the defence didn’t have facts to substantiate their allegations.
Colonel Mohlame finished his cross examination at eleven thirty, and then the prosecutor requested from the judge a fifteen minutes break of which was granted.
At eleven forty five, the court resumed and the defence lawyers continued to cross examine the witness.  Colonel Mohlame affirmed to the defence lawyers that during his interview with the accused number one (Armani  Uriwani), “ the accused cooperated with police in order to arrest other accused”.  Questioned whether he was promised to be a state witness, Colonel Mohlame said that “there was a possibility of using him as a witness, but there was no promises made to him”.
Colonel Mohlame further indicated to the court that the accused,  Armani Uriwani, a.k.a Rukara told him of how he was contacted while practicing soccer, and what transpired thereafter.  During the interview “ Rukara seemed relaxed and calm  and that made me believe what Rukara was saying to be true”.
He ( Armani uriwani) went further  and said that; “my aim was to get the money and feed my children and get out of the deal “. He also told him ( Col Mohlame) that “it was never my intention to kill someone”.
Colonel Mohlame told the court that when Rukara heard people mention a name “Afande” he immediately knew that”it was a high profile person to be killed and he didn’t want to go further with the job”. Colonel Mohlame’s cross examination ended at this point.
After the court took a break for few minutes, the prosecutor brought in Captain Nicolas Bongani Ganinda from the Gauteng Vehicle Identification System at the SAPS, who took the statement from the accused number one.
Captain Bongani indicated to the court that he was asked by Colonel Mohlame to take statement from the accused number one in an office next to his office room at the Johannesburg Organised Crime Unity, based at the old Johannesburg stock Exchange building on Kerk and Diagonal Street, Johannesburg.
The accused number one was brought in by Colonel Mohlame without handcuffs, as he felt that there is enough security in the building and that the accused was cooperating with the police.
Before he (Capt Bongani) could start taking statement from the accused, he explained to the accused his rights and what justice of peace meant. The accused confirmed that he understood it and is ready to give his statement. He also indicated that it is made freely and voluntarily.
Captain Bongani told the court that the statement and his conversation with the accused was done in English and that the accused wanted to tell the truth and clear his name.  The defence lawyers asked him if there was any benefits promised to the accused, Captain Bongani told the magistrate that there were no promises made and that Rukara further  informed him that; “ I want to tell the truth and let the law take its course”. He (Rukara) also added that he was involved in the planning of the crime but he was not there when it took place, and that he was offered R14 000 for his involvement in the killing of Gen Kayumba Nyamwasa.
The defence lawyers questioned him to weather Rukara understands and reads English, as he speaks broken English, which you can hardly hear. Captain Bongani confirmed to the court that his interactions with the accused made him believe that the accussed number one ( Armani uriwani) was able to express himself well in English and seemed  an intelligent man. He also told the court that all information was given freely and voluntarily by the accused.
The defence team insisted that Rukara can’t speak or read English and that their client was forced to make statement that he does not even understand, and that English is not his first language. Captain Bongani responded to the defence lawyers that English is not his first language as well and that “I tried to the best of my abilities to communicate with him and we got on along very well”.
The court was adjoined for the following day, 29th March 2012.  What remains clear and quite evident to everyone in court is that the defence failed their bid in this trial within a trial to prove to the magistrate that their client accused number one ( Armani uriwani) was under duress  into giving those confessions.

J D Mwiseneza

Jeppe Magistrate Court

Johannesburg, South Africa.



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