By Andrew Irumba
Arua: Francis Butebi Zaake, the Mityana Municipality Member of Parliament, is set to appear in Arua Court today to for hearing of his case of escaping from lawful custody today, Friday May 24th, 2019.
The case arose from the Arua By-election fracas last year, which ended with the presidential motorcade allegedly being stoned by People Power supporters. Following the fracas, several legistalors who included Robert Kyahulanyi aka Bobi Wine, Kassiano Wadri, Francis Zaake and others were arrested and detained at various detention centres across the country. However, Zaake, was allegedly brutalized and tortured by state security agents, found himself at Rubaga hospital, where he was dumped, in coma, by unknown people, with his body covered in wounds. However police claims that Zaake escaped from police cells in Arua. They thus opened up charges of escaping from lawful custody against him. He was later arrested as he tried to fly to India for specialised medical attention, although he was shortly thereafter released on court bail. But Zaake argues that this case is politically motivated because he was arrested by police in Arua, tortured and cannot tell how he reached Rubaga hospital, yet he was in police hands.
“This case is entirely political and I do strongly believe without doubt that it is intended to waste our precious time that we would invest in the struggle. This is not prosecution but rather political persecution.” Zaake said. He added that “Our precious time and court’s time cannot be wasted in the higgledy-piggledy orchestrated by the state. God forbid! Our resources shall not be wasted in nonentities.” He added. Zaake, who recently underwent an operation in the right leg because of the injuries he suffered, promised to respect courts of law as long as they are independent from political interests which contravenes with the 1995 Constitution of Uganda. “Being responsible citizens, we have a duty to respect courts of law but, this shall be as long as they prove to be the fountain of justice, dispensing it in accordance with the aspirations of the people of Uganda.” Zaake said, before adding that “That said, it is our prayer that court dismisses this case and such other related cases trumped upon other comrades in the struggle.” Zaake is the defacto Vice President of people power and very close to Kyadondo East legislator Kyagulanyi Robert Ssentamu popularly known as Bobi.