Uganda drops charges of illegal gun possession against South Sudanese General.

Updated by Faith Barbara Namagembe at 0923 EAT on Thursday 16th March 2023.

South Sudan People’s Liberations Army (SPLA) Lieutenant General William Mark Orobi has been freed by the Uganda Army court and charges of unlawful possession of firearms and ammunition dropped.  

Orobi first appeared before former Army court chairperson Lt Gen Andrew Gutti on August 5, 2019 and his charges date back to 2018. Court then heard that on April 5, 2018, while at Kigumba in Masindi district, Orobi was found in unlawful possession of an AK-47 rifle 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 Brig Freeman Robert Mugabe, 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 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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