A 35-year-old man has pleaded guilty to murdering his 70-year-old lover and burying the body in a bathtub which he filled with concrete.
Benard Mbaziira alias David Mbabali made the confession during a Plea Bargain session at the High Court yesterday. He told the presiding judge, Justice Joseph Murangira, that he felt remorseful during the current Lent period and resolved to confess to the killing of his lover Harriet Mbaziira Kigongo.
Plea Bargain is an arrangement in the Uganda justice system where an accused person agrees with the prosecution to plead guilty to the offences against him in return for a lenient sentence on conviction. Justice Joseph Murangira sentenced Mbabali to 20 years in prison.
Mbabali is jointly charged with the deceased’s stepson, a one Allan Mbaziira, who denied the charges and is still on remand.
During the Plea Bargain, Mbabali also agreed to testify as a state witness against Mbaziira and help police trace the other suspects.
On January 15, 2015, Ms Kigongo’s daughters Mary and Victoria who live in the United Kingdom called her but the call was answered by Mbabali who told them that their mother had travelled to Ghana.
The daughters, who found it strange that their mother had travelled without informing them contacted the deceased’s close friend Ms Florence Mbabazi and asked her to check on their mother at her residence in Kampala’s Wakaliga Zone B suburb.
“The daughters were worried because their step-brother (Allan Mbaziira) had earlier threatened to kill their mother over their late father’s estate,” the indictment reads in part.
When Ms Mbabazi reached the deceased’s home, she found Mbabali alone in the house. He denied her access to the house, which intensified the suspicion of something amiss.
Ms Mbabazi proceeded to Nateete Police Station where she reported her friend Ms Kigongo’s disappearance.
Police detectives went to the deceased’s residence, searched the house and arrested Mbabali.
They found the deceased’s clothes and suitcases in her bedroom, but the bathroom door and ventilators were sealed off with plywood and fresh cement.
Police broke the plywood and Mbabali jumped over the balcony on the second floor of the house to the ground and ran away, although he was arrested later.
As the police continued to break the blockage, a stench hit them from the bathroom confirming the deceased had been buried there. The police search yielded Ms Kigongo’s decomposing body.