Govt driver who knocked dead Kagadi protestor remanded

Govt driver who knocked Kagadi protestor dead remanded
Stephen Tibihikiira, a driver attached to Kagadi District Local Government has been remanded over knocking a protestor dead.

Kagadi, Uganda | By Michael Wandati | Stephen Tibihikiira, a government driver who knocked dead a protestor in Muhooro Town Council, has been remanded by the Kagadi Grade One Magistrate’s Court. The incident occurred during a demonstration against the poor state of Muhooro Ndaiga road.

During the court session presided over by Magistrate Edward Kayukyi, the prosecution alleged that on February 26, 2024 around 9:30 am, Tibikiira caused the death of 28-year-old Tuhaise Magezi in Igurika Village along Muhooro-Bwikara Road. He was driving motor vehicle registration number UG 6998M in a manner deemed dangerous to the public.

Tuhaise was among the protestors demonstrating against the neglect of the 31-kilometer Muhooro-Ndaiga Road by the government, despite its crucial importance to the locals.

Magistrate Kayukyi emphasized that as a government driver, Tibikihikiira was expected to exhibit good morals on the road. The reckless driving leading to death is considered contrary to Section 108, subsection one of the Traffic and Road Safety Act as amended in 2020.

“As a government driver, we expect you to have good morals on the road, when we watched that video it was scaring, on an open road why speed like that, so this no doubt is reckless driving,” Kayukyi said.

Despite the court’s request for a plea, Tibihikiira, 38, pleaded not guilty.

Senior State Prosecutor Kagadi Bushira Nakanyike disclosed that investigations into the matter are still ongoing. “Your worship, we ask for more time as our team is still gathering all evidence against the suspect,” Bushira stated.

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Tibihikira, through his lawyers Adonia Tiberondwa Ssetimba and Co. Advocates, requested bail, but the court denied it, citing potential interference with ongoing investigations.

“Unfortunately, I can’t grant your client bail given the nature of the crime committed, but also the state has informed you that investigations are still ongoing,” the magistrate explained.

The driver, Stephen Tibihikiira was arrested on February 27 by Police in Kagadi District after a video went viral on social media, showing a speeding car he was driving knocking a protestor dead.

Tibihikira has been remanded to Mambugu Kagadi Prison until March 26. Counsel Tiberondwa acknowledged that the magistrate’s decision, though unfavorable to their client, was not made in bad faith after the court proceedings.