Alion Yorke Odria, the Aringa South county member of parliament in Yumbe district has appeared before the Buganda Road Magistrates Court for causing grievous harm and assaulting a police officer while on lawful duties at Parliament. The legislator appeared before the Buganda Road Magistrates Court, Siena Owomugisha on Wednesday, who read for him the two charges.
The Court heard that on September 29th, 2022 while in the main building of Parliament in Kampala Central Division, the legislator unlawfully did grievous harm to Assistant Superintendent of Police, Alex Nsenge. Court also heard that on the same day, the legislator assaulted Nsenge in the course of executing his lawful duties as a Police Officer. The legislator pleaded not guilty to the charges.
The prosecutors led by Joan Keko informed the Court that investigations into the matter are complete and asked the court to give them a hearing date. Owomugisha set November 4th, 2022 for the trial to commence.
Prior to the adjournment Alion’s lawyers led by Renato Kania applied for bail, arguing that the charges against him are bailable and that he has substantial sureties. They presented Maracha county MP Denis Lee Oguzu, Matheniko County MP Dr. John Baptist Lokii, and Robert Ejiku, the Chief Executive Officer of Tea Development Agency Limited as his sureties. Kania told Court that he had briefed the sureties about their roles and they seemed to have understood.
He asked the court to release his client, saying that he will not interfere with the Prosecution witnesses if released. In her response, Keko told the Court that although the charges against Alion are not grave in nature, the mere fact that he was brave enough to assault a police officer is a serious matter, which the court should take note of.
She also argued that this is a matter of personal nature where the accused, the victim and the witnesses work in the same environment, saying there is no proof that he will not interfere with witnesses. Keko also noted that although the sureties presented before the court can stand for the legislator she would prefer his relatives who can easily bring him to court. She told the court that should it be pleased to grant the accused bail, the court should direct the legislator to pay cash that is handsome enough to bring him back to court for trial since investigations are complete.
In her ruling, Owomugisha found the sureties to be substantial, saying that when she interrogated them they knew their obligations, which include making sure that the accused doesn’t abscond from the trial. She also said since the Prosecution has told Court the investigations are complete, Alion will not in any way interfere with them.
She granted the accused cash bail of 1 million Shillings and directed each of his sureties to execute a noncash bond of 10 million Shillings. She also directed Alion to deposit his passport with Court until the matter is disposed of. The legislator’s court appearance follows his arrested from one of the bars in Kololo, a high-end suburb in Kampala City on Tuesday evening after snubbing a summons from the Criminal Directorate of Police.
According to sources, the legislator failed to respond to the summons since he is busy preparing for his wedding scheduled for October 8th, 2022. He spent a night at Jinja Road Police Station where he emerged from being escorted by detectives for plea taking.
Alion was captured in a video that has since gone viral punching a Police officer while protesting the alleged vote rigging among other irregularities that marred the East African Legislative Assembly-EALA elections.
In the video clips, Alion is seen carrying the ballot box as he repeatedly shouts ‘vote rigging’ while heading to the main parliamentary chambers prompting Nsenge and officers from the office of the sergeant at arms to intercept him.