Freed Kenyan challenges deportation order in court

Freed Kenyan challenges deportation order in court
Omar Awadh Omar has filed an application challenging his deportation

A Kenyan national Omar Awadh Omar has filed an application challenging his deportation. Omar through his lawyers Caleb Alaka and Evans Ochieng filed the application before the International Crimes Division of the High Court in Kampala three days after he was freed of terrorism charges.

Awadh Omar was first arrested in 2010 as he was heading to the Jamia mosque in Nairobi, Kenya. He joined 12 other suspects in Kampala who were accused of masterminding the attack on Kyaddondo Rugby Grounds, Lugogo and Ethiopian Village Restaurant in Kabalagala in July 2010. The attack which targeted Ugandans, who were watching the World Cup between Spain and the Netherlands at the two sites, claimed more than 70 lives. He had been in detention for eight years.

During the trial, the prosecution alleged that months before the attacks, Omar received 138.8 million Shillings from London through Qaran forex bureau in Kenya and used that money to fund the attacks in Uganda.

But in June 2016, Omar and four others; Abubaker Batemyetto and Dr Ismael Kalule Yahaya Mbuthia Suleiman and Muhammad Hamid Suleiman were acquitted of all charges and court ordered their release. Justice Alphonse Owiny-Dollo said prosecution had failed to prove a case against them beyond reasonable doubt. The four others included

However, they were re-arrested and slapped with fresh charges of terrorism. According to the fresh charge sheet, the group was found in possession of literature for promoting terrorism. They allegedly committed the offense between February 16 and March 16, 2016 while under detention.

State prosecutors stated that the literature contained detailed descriptions and instructions on how to successfully carry out a terror attack including a description of criteria for target choice, personnel identification and training, surveillance and the appropriate weapons to be used in the said attack.

But early this week, the five were freed after the Director of Public Prosecutions discontinue their trial. The court thereafter received deportation letters for three of the suspects, said to be Kenyan nationals and who had been deemed to be undesirable, according to Internal Affairs Minister Jeje Odong.

The three include Omar, Yahaya Mbuthia Suleiman and Muhammad Hamid Suleiman. However, Omar insists that he is a Ugandan and cannot be deported to Kenya.

In his application filed before the International Crimes Division of High Court yesterday, Omar states that that he is a biological son of the late Omar Awadh an Arab of Kenyan origin, and Fatuma Said Abdallah Munyankore by tribe and Ugandan by nationality.

Omar says that although he lived in Kenya with his late father and step mothers and assumed Kenyan citizenship, his biological mother has at all times lived in Uganda and has a permanent residence where she resided with her other children.

However, Omar says that his father passed away in Kenya on February 24, 2011, when he was in Luzira Prison and that the only point of contact he has is his mother, who lives in Uganda. He states that the Ugandan government did not give him a fair hearing or consider the said grounds before making the deportation order. Omar’s application is supported by his personal affidavit and that of his mother, Fatuma Said Abdallah.

In the Mother’s Affidavit, it is stated that she fled Uganda together with Omar and his father in 1973 and sought refuge in Mombasa Kenya. In 2002, they decided to come back to Uganda and settled in Kawuku, along Entebbe Road, although some of their four children including the applicant remained in Kenya.

“However my husband passed away in Kenya on February 24, 2011, while the Applicant was in prison and I did not bury him because I was also being held in Kireka over the same wild allegations. My son was acquitted of by Justice Owiny Dollo”, reads the affidavit in part.

Fatuma says that they have now fully settled in Uganda and currently are residing at Kajjansi, Wakiso District where his late husband and sons constructed a house and it’s where Omar was constructing his home before incarceration.

The matter is fixed for hearing on September 12, 2018, before Justice Margaret Oumo Oguli.