By Kabuye Ronald
Sitting as a single judge of the court of appeal, the deputy chief justice Steven Kavuma has today heard the Bail application by the convicted former officials of Ministry of Public Service Jimmy Lwamafa, Christopher Obey and Steven Kiwanuka Kunsa pending the hearing of their appeal challenging the Anti-corruption court decision, that sentenced them to imprisonment and compensation of the misappropriated pension money.
Through their lawyers led by Evans Ochieng the trio argued that it’s their constitutional right to be released on bail, due to poor health and being of an advanced age.
They each presented three sureties. However, the state attorney Maximu Elizooba challenged the application and asked the trial judge to subject the accused to bail release of 16.5billion and their sureties’ 10 million cash in case the application succeeds. Justice Steven Kavuma has now set the ruling on notice.
The Anti-corruption judge Lawrence Gidudu sentenced Jimmy Lwamafa who was then Permanent Secretary, together with Obey then Principal Accountant and Kunsa then Commissioner Compensation Department on 10 counts of causing financial loss, abuse of office, false accounting, conspiracy to defraud and diversion of public funds in November last night.
They were accused of paying out 88 billion shs as NSSF benefits to ghost pensioners. Court also ordered them to refund at least 50 billion shs while Lwamafa was sentenced to 7, Kunsa 5 and Obey 10 years.