Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Dr Onzivua cries in court

Dr Onzivua (R) breaks down at Buganda Road Court yesterday after he was cleared of abuse of office and conspiracy to unlawfully obtain body parts of former Butaleja Woman MP Cerinah Nebanda
 Dr Onzivua (R) breaks down at Buganda Road Court yesterday after he was cleared of abuse of office and conspiracy to unlawfully obtain body parts of former Butaleja Woman MP Cerinah Nebanda.


KAMPALA
Mulago pathologist, Sylvester Onzivua yesterday broke down in tears of joy after Buganda Road Court acquitted and discharged him over charges of abuse of office and conspiracy to unlawfully obtain body parts of former Butaleja Woman MP Cerinah Nebanda.
Dr Onzivua was jointly charged with Kinkizi East legislator Chris Baryomunsi. Speaking to the Daily Monitor after the acquittal, Dr Baryomunsi said the public still demands a convincing explanation from the State on the cause of the untimely death of the youthful former MP (Nebanda).
He said they have instructed their lawyers to file a suit against the State, resulting from what they referred to as the nine months malicious prosecution they faced. It is through this suit that they will seek to be compensated.
No evidence
While giving her ruling in a court fully parked with friends and relatives of the freed suspects, the presiding Chief Magistrate, Ms Olive Kazaarwe, said no reasonable tribunal would convict the duo basing on irresolute prosecution evidence on record.
“There is no evidence indicating that the pre-postmortem meetings stopped Dr Onzivua from taking samples for further examination. So his actions do not constitute a criminal offence, he did everything in broad day light and it was documented,” Ms Kazaarwe said. She said the conspiracy charges are worthless since Dr Baryomunsi was acting on behalf of the Parliamentary Commission.
“This court concurred with the defense lawyers’ submissions that prosecution had failed to adduce evidence to back up the allegations levied against their clients. It is the finding of this court that a prima facie case has not been made against the accused persons on the available evidence to require them to defend themselves,” she said.
Prosecution alleged that on December 15 at Mulago hospital mortuary, Dr Onzivua, Dr Baryomunsi and others obtained Nebanda’s body samples and attempted to take them to South Africa without permission.
The cause of death
An official autopsy report that the government says was done in the United Kingdom revealed traces of alcohol and narcotics in the 24-year-old MP’s body. However, her fellow MPs claim her death was suspicious, attributing it to possible poisoning. The deceased (Nebanda) allegedly collapsed at a friend’s house on December 14, at 7pm, and was taken to Mukwaya General Hospital at Nsambya, where she was pronounced dead on arrival.