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Court dismisses charges of obtaining false registration at Makerere University by Bobi Wine

Court has upheld the decision of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) to withdraw charges of obtaining false registration at Makerere University against musician Mr. Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu alias Bobi Wine.

Bobi Wine who also doubles as the opposition National Unity Platform Party principal was dragged to the Law Development Centre Court in Kampala by Mr. Male Mabirizi in September 2021 with the latter accusing him of being admitted at Makerere University to pursue a Diploma in Dance and Drama on mature-age entry when he reportedly did not meet the criteria for such.

The DPP on October 7 took over the case from Mr. Mabirizi, citing that under Article 120 of the Constitution, the DPP is empowered to take over the prosecution of any criminal matter at any given stage of the trial.

However, earlier last month, the court received a letter dated December 16, 2021, from the DPP withdrawing charges against Mr. Kyagulanyi, and the same was objected to by Mr. Mabirizi who noted that “it was wrong for DPP to withdraw proceedings initially commenced by a private prosecutor minus consent, and without giving reasons.”

In his ruling, the trial magistrate Augustine Alule noted that apart from being suspicious that the resident state attorney’s action of sending the file to DPP’s regional office is intended to delay the proceedings, Mr. Mabirizi did not prove even to the slightest irrational or illegality being committed by the office of the DPP.

“Who is to prosecute a criminal case is not determined by courts but it is a soul preserve of the DPP. The role of the court is only to consent in the event that the DPP wants to take over the private prosecution or discontinue proceedings from another person or authority,” Mr. Alule ruled.

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“In the premises, I find that the letter Mr. Mabirizi wrote to this court dated January 4 has no merit. I want to echo that from the time the DPP took over the matter, Mr. Mabirizi lost locally to address the court about the same,” he added.

Court also ruled that the DPP has no obligation to give reasons for withdrawing as it is worth noting that it is independent prosecuting her functions.

“Having found that the DPP acted within her powers and authority and having found no disregard by the DPP to the public interest or interest of administration and all legal process, I find no reason to withhold the consent of this court to discontinue this case,” Mr. Alule ruled.

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