SSPDF clueless of its General acquitted by Ugandan court

By Abraham Abraham Anyon Ngoor

The spokesperson of the South Sudan People’s Defenses Forces (SSPDF), Major General Lul Ruai Koang said Bilpam is not aware of Lt. General William Mark Orobi, an SSPDF officer allegedly arrested in Uganda for unlawful possession of firearm and rounds of ammunitions but was yesterday released by court martial.

Maj. Gen. Lul when contacted by No. 1 Citizen Daily Newspaper denied having any knowledge of the said SSPDF General who had been arrested and detained by Ugandan authorities, adding therefore he had no idea of his release.

He said SSPDF is not aware of the release of Lt. General William Mark Orobi by the General Court in Makindye who was reportedly found in unlawful possession of an Ak 47 with 19 bullets in 2018 as reported by Ugandan local media.

“We are not aware of his arrest,” SSSPF spokesperson Maj. Gen. Lul told this newspaper yesterday.

Uganda media reports

Uganda media, “The Tower Post” yesterday reported that a General Court Martial in Makindye freed Lt. General William Mark Orobi from South Sudan People’s Defense Forces-SSPDF. It came after the prosecution dropped the charges of unlawful possession of firearms and ammunition against Orobi.

The general first appeared before the former court martial chairperson, Chairperson Lt General Andrew Gutti on August, 5th 2019. His charges dated back to 2018. Court then heard that on April 5th, 2018, while at Kigumba in Masindi District, Orobi was found in unlawful possession of an AK 47 gun with 19 bullets, which the military prosecutors argued that they are ordinarily the monopoly of the Defense Forces.

Orobi pleaded not guilty to both charges and was remanded to Makindye Military Barracks but was later released on bail pending a hearing. 

However, when the matter came up on Tuesday before the general court-martial chaired by Brigadier Freeman Robert Mugabe, the military prosecutors Pte Anthony Phillip Olupot and Lt Gift Mubehamwe told the court that they had instructions to withdraw charges against Orobi.

“The Director of Prosecutions has given us instructions to discontinue the ongoing case against Lt. Gen. Orobi. He has given us a letter to present before this court and we pray that court accepts it,” Olupot told Court.

Mugabe endorsed the letter and discharged Lt. General Orobi. According to the Firearms Act, unlawful possession of firearms attracts a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison upon conviction.

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