A UPDF soldier Lance Corporal Moses Katoko Katwesigye has been handed a 90-year jail sentence for murder and attempted murder.
Katwesigye was this afternoon convicted by the 2nd Division Court Martial sitting at Kihihi Polytechnic Institute grounds in Kanungu district.
The session, chaired by Col Godfrey Mujuni found Katwesigye guilty of indiscriminately shooting and killing eight people at Kihihi trading centre on the night of April 21, 2016. Katwesigye had escaped from his duty station, with his firearm after a domestic fight with his wife at the time of the tragedy.
The dead were identified as Lance Corporal Byansi Salezio, Private Auma Sarah, Musimenta Miria, Byamukama Medard, Tindiwensi Oliver Tugumisirize, Kyosimire Apofia, Gumoshabe Victory, James Tumuheise and Shafi Ndahikiri, all from Kiruruma village in Kihihi town council. Several other persons are reported to have survived the attack with injuries.
During the course of the hearing, which started on Monday, prosecution presented a total of 25 witnesses who pinned the soldier on the crimes committed.
Katwesigye was handed 60 years for eight counts of murder and other 30 years for three counts of attempted murder. The sentences will be served concurrently.
The chairperson of the court martial described the soldier's actions as unfortunate adding that Katwesigye was a threat to the people he was tasked to protect.
The ruling sparked off cheers from the crowds that had turned up for the hearing saying that he deserved the punishment.
Dickson Tuhumwire, a survivor of the shootings who was left with scars on his right arm and chest welcomed the ruling. He says that he was happy that the trial of the case was handled expeditiously.
Second Division army spokesperson Ronald Kakurungu said that the court was able to handle the case quickly because the locals collaborated and availed evidence to the court leading to successful prosecution.