The trial in the murder of social worker Kenneth Akena that occurred finally kicked off on Tuesday this week after several days of police investigations. But it was the apparent celebratory demeanour by the suspects as was seen from their laughter and giggles inside and outside the courtroom that has left the anxious public wondering what really is going on.
As police continues to gather evidence, the behaviour on Tuesday, of the three suspects Matthew Kanyamunyu, his brother Joseph Kanyamunyu, and Matthew’s girlfriend Cynthia Munwangari, left many observers with cringe reactions after the trio displayed indifference and insensitivity at the loss of life.
While some sections of the media have rightly been criticised for sensationalising the murder and fanning tribal tensions, but so bizarre were the reactions of the suspects that many were left puzzled.
Of course this newspaper shall not dive into deliberating on the details of the case as this would be prejudicing the matter. But the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) has said it was convinced there were sufficient grounds to charge the trio with murder. So, Matthew, Joseph and Cynthia were remanded to Luzira prison until December 6.
Prosecution alleges that on November 12, 2016, at Lugogo on Kampala-Jinja highway near Malik car bond, Matthew, Munwangari and Joseph caused the death of Kenneth Akena with malice aforethought.
The magistrate simply read out the charges to the suspects and remanded them to Luzira prison without allowing them to say anything in response. The court is vested with no authority to hear the grave charge of murder.
Tough job ahead for the DPP
Having charged the trio, the DPP now faces a tough job of pinning down them for the death of Akena. To start with, the killer gun has since gone missing. Add to this the fact that the cartridge is missing too.
Although rumour is rife that Kanyamunyu could have hid the gun after shooting Akena in order to escape culpability, such talk remains idle and cannot be relied on by any judge to convict anyone with murder.
Much as Kanyamunyu places himself and his girlfriend right there at the scene of crime by confirming that he saw Akena being shot, and more so, carried the dying man to hospital, he changes the scene of crime from Lugogo Game Stores to a car depot away.
This has the negative effect of undoing Akena’s dying declaration that it is the man who carried him to hospital who had actually shot him from the parking of Lugogo game stores.
The differences in the scene of crime as put forward by Prosecution has in truth seen police visiting the scene several times for purposes of carrying out the much-needed reconstruction of which scene fits the case at hand.
That no trace of blood was found in the car Kanyamunyu used to deliver Akena to hospital yet he had been shot, is another tricky situation the DPP will have to contend with come the hearing day. If Kanyamunyu killed Akena at all, he must have done a good job (in the wrong sense), covering his tracks.
One thing is for sure, the trial will keep many tuned in.