The police Criminal Investigations Directorate and the Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP) spent over $500,000 (about Shs 1.8 billion) to investigate and prosecute cases related to the July 11, 2010 twin bombings in Kampala.
The investigations which led to the successful prosecution and conviction of five of the more than 20 initial suspects, was done through an inter-agency security partnership led by the police force.
A special funding was processed by the ministry of Finance to facilitate the entire investigations process that included importing experts from the USA and UK as well as transporting detectives from Uganda to Kenya, Tanzania and Somalia.
More than $50,000 was spent on travels alone. The travels included transporting witnesses during the trial to come and testify, sending detectives to different countries to interview witnesses and bringing in experts. According to the CID director Grace Akullo, terrorism cases need a lot of money to be successfully investigated.
“We need a lot of funds to handle terrorism cases. Like the 2010 twin bombings in Kampala, we used more than $500,000,” Akullo said.
On the night of July 11, 2010, at least 76 people died when terrorists linked to the al-Shabaab detonated bombs at two different places targeting people who were watching the final match of the 2010 FIFA World Cup between Netherlands and Spain. The explosions went off at Kyadondo Rugby Club in Lugogo and Ethiopian Village restaurant in Kabalagala.
Security agencies immediately took up the case, analysing the scene of crime, flying in experts from the US Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) and other international specialised agencies.
More than 60 suspects were initially arrested and interrogated but a few months later only 31 suspects who included Somalian, Kenyan, Ugandan and Tanzanian nationals were charged with terrorism, murder and attempted murder.
Out of the 31, the DPP dropped charges against 18 basing on evidence got from interrogations and confessions.
The remaining 13 suspect underwent trial after being on remand for more than five years. In May 2016, current deputy Chief Justice Alphonse Owiny-Dollo, then still heading the High court, war crimes division, sentenced seven of the suspects to lengthy prison terms and acquitted five others.
Five of the convicts were sentenced to life imprisonment for terrorism, murder and attempted murder. They include Isa Ahmed Luyima (Ugandan), Hassan Hussein Agade (Kenyan), Edris Christopher Magondu (Kenyan), Habib Suleiman Njoroge (Kenyan) and Muhammad Ali Mohammed (Kenyan).
Two other convicts; Hassan Haruna Luyima (Ugandan) and Sulaiman Hijar Nyamadondo (Tanzanian), were each handed a 50-year jail sentence for their role in the attacks.
For being an accessory to the crimes, Muzafar Luyima (Ugandan) was sentenced to one year of community service, given that he had already spent six years behind bars.
Those acquitted of terrorism, murder and attempted murder were Omar Awadh Omar, Muhammed Hamid Suleiman, Yahya Suleiman Mbuthia, Batematyo Abubakari, and Dr Ismail Kalule.
They were however re-arrested shortly after their release and are currently facing fresh charges of terrorism in Jinja Magistrate’s Court.