Judiciary Driver Kisambira Granted Bail

Stanley Kisambira, the Judiciary driver accused of threatening a judge in an accident, protesting low pay, has been charged with promoting hate speech and granted bail.

Kisambira was granted non-cash bail of Shs10 million, while his three sureties were each granted bail of Shs5 million.

He appeared before Buganda Road Chief Magistrate Gladys Kamasanyu on Thursday, who read to him the charges, which he denied. His lawyers, led by Derrick Bazekuketta and Stanley Okecho, then applied for bail.

Bazekuketta argued that Kisambira’s charges do not involve violence but instead relate to issues of poor remuneration of drivers by the judiciary, where he has worked for 16 years.

Kisambira presented three sureties, who included his wife, Grace Mukisa Lugolole, his nephew, Patrick Wambi, and his fellow driver in the judiciary, Francis Mbaziira.

The prosecution, led by Allan Mucunguzi, opposed the bail application on the grounds that he might abscond from trial since he has not produced an introduction letter from the place where he normally resides.

Mucunguzi said he also doesn’t have an introduction letter from his employer, and as such, there is no proof that he is employed by the judiciary.

But in her ruling, Kamasanyu said that she was satisfied with the submissions by Kisambira’s lawyers that he has presented his employment identity card, is still presumed innocent, and has a fixed place of residence and work.

She noted that Kisambira’s sureties have proven to the court that they know him and have demonstrated capacity to compel him to return to court, and as such, they have been found to be substantial. She adjourned the case to June 12, 2023.

Kisambira was first arrested last week and detained at the Central Police Station in Kampala and released on bond after an audio clip went viral. In the clip, Kisambira is heard saying that he would commit suicide and kill his principal, bodyguard, and himself in an accident to protest low pay.

On Monday, he was arrested after reporting to police as part of his bond conditions. He was taken to Buganda Road Magistrates Court and appeared before Grade One Magistrate Fidelis Otwao, who read to him the charges against him.

He was remanded until June 2nd, 2023, and asked to apply for bail.

Trouble for Kisambira started when he recorded audio clips that subsequently went viral on social media platforms. In the clips, Kisambira, a driver for Mbale High Court judge Godfrey Namundi, expressed his dissatisfaction with salary disparities in the judiciary for drivers.

Following his statements, Judiciary Permanent Secretary Pius Bigirimana accused Kisambira of misconduct and wrote to him on May 16.

Bigirimana stated that Kisambira should have used proper channels, such as the public service standing orders, to address his grievances instead of resorting to social media.

Bigirimana emphasized that inciting violence, making threats, and spreading false information are unprofessional, criminal, and punishable offenses. In the letter, Bigirimana asked Kisambira to explain his actions within five days, and failure to do so could result in disciplinary measures, including dismissal from the judiciary.

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