Ponsiano Lwakataka arrested again

  • by Ignatius Liposhe
  • January 23, 2017
Ponsiano Lwakataka

Embattled Motor rally ace Mr Ponsiano Lwakataka who last year sued government for Shs40b for malicious prosecution has on Sunday been arrested again after he was found transporting premature fish to Democratic Republic of Congo.

Officials at Uganda Revenue Authority headquarters confirmed that Mr Lwakataka, 42, was found to own a truck full of premature fish and that he will be prosecuted in courts of law.

The case

According to sources privy to Lwakataka’s arrest, URA law enforcement officers and Uganda Police officers were involved in a cat and mouse chase with Lwakataka in Western Uganda as he tried to use his driving tricks to escape. The truck was intercepted approaching Bushenyi as it on its way from Kampala to a DRC market where the fish is expensively consumed.

According to eyewitness reports, the chase and eventual arrest of a Fuso truck loaded with the young fish was first flagged down by URA officials but Lwakataka’s driver refused to stop. This caused further belief that the truck had illegal goods although the chasing officials were not sure, they had suspected that the truck was carrying ivory.

One police officer who preferred anonymity because he is not allowed to talk to media disclosed to TheUgandan that they became suspicious and decided to follow the vehicle whose driver kept blocking the police patrol car and URA vehicle from overtaking him.

After kilometers of chasing, the truck driver stopped and jumped out of vehicle. It was then that Lwakataka appeared shortly in a classy car. He then asked his driver to speed off as he drove behind him, blocking the URA officials with his rally skills.

The chasing team eventually arrested him near Mbarara and they detained him at Kabwohe in Sheema district before he was released on police bond after hours of negotiation.

Longtime fish smuggler

Lwakataka’s woes started early 2015 after he was arrested in possession of immature fish and shooting at police officers while allegedly smuggling the fish to DR Congo. He was granted bail on August 1,2014, by Kalisizo grade one magistrate, Suzan Awidi on charges of assaulting ,threatening violence ,obstruction of a police officer on March 2,2014 after he stopped them on their way from Kasensero Landing Site in Rakai District. However, he was re-arrested and remanded to Masaka Central Prisons over new charges of murder last September.

Murder allegations

In December 2015, Lwakataka celebrated Christmas as a free man after court acquitted him of murder charges. Mr Lwakataka, was accused of masterminding the murder of nine people in Rakai District. Court heard that on January 13, 2013 at Kannabulemu village, Kyebe Sub -County in Rakai district, unknown assailants drilled a hole into a house, attacked and killed Pastor Mugambe, his wife Noeline Nalinnya, his mother Maria Namatovu and six other family members. Lwakataka was accused of hiring the assailants.

By Chris Mugisha