Former Makerere University Research fellow Dr. Stella Nyanzi’s common nuisance case dismissed

Buganda Road Court Grade One Magistrate, Joan Ketty Acaa has dismissed the case in which Dr. Stella Nyanzi was charged with a common nuisance.

Nyanzi, 46, an anthropologist and a former Makerere University research fellow was battling the charges alongside businessmen, Godfrey Katongole, 34, and Isaac Newton, 34.

The trio had in July this year denied the charge that contravenes section 160 (1) of the Penal Code Act and attracts a maximum sentence of one-year imprisonment, on conviction.

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However, the Magistrate, Wednesday (November 4, 2020) dismissed the case after the state failed to furnish the court with witnesses to pin the suspects.

Katongole and Nyanzi addressing a joint press conference before they were arraigned in court for the same.

“In the interest of justice, I note that the prosecution has failed to adduce court with witnesses since July when the suspects were arraigned for the plea.

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The case is therefore dismissed for want of prosecution and the accused are hereby set free unless held on other charges,” Acaa ruled.

The charges

The prosecution had alleged that on July 8, 2020, at Nakaseero Market in Kampala, Nyanzi, Katongole, Newton and others still at large did an act not authorized by law to wit carrying placards written on, ‘we are tied of lockdown, using COVID-19 to violate human rights.’

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According to the prosecution, the said actions and words caused inconveniences to the public in the exercise of common rights.