Kampala- General who commanded ‘operation iron fist’ against LRA in Southern Sudan hit by iron bar
Former Uganda army commander, Maj. Gen. James Kazini, was Tuesday morning murdered after a girlfriend allegedly hit him with an iron bar.
The incident happened at Namuwongo, a Kampala Suburb.
Inspector General of Police Gen. Kale Kayihura said the former army commander, who was facing trial for various alleged offences was murdered by a woman he identified only as Atim. “He has been murdered. We are still investigating (circumstance),” he said.
The Police Chief said the Atim has been arrested and police is trying to establish the relationship she had with the deceased. “She is the one who killed him early this morning,” Gen. Kayihura told Australia.To on Phone
Army Spokesman Lt. Col. Felix Kulayigye says the former Army Commander was killed in “domestic violence with his girl friend and we are still investigating.”
Gulu Resident District Commissioner Col. Walter Ocora said Atim has been a long time ‘friend’ to the general. He said he has always sat together with them at Fair Ways Hotel in Kampala
The girlfriend has been arrested and taken for questioning at Kampala Central Police Station
Maj. Gen. James Kazini served as army Commander of the Uganda People's Defence Force (UPDF), the national army before he was removed following reports that he had created a private brigade with which he intended to overthrow the government.
Gen. Kazini was suspended by President Museveni sent to a war college, but it was widely suspected that he was suspended after allegations by the United Nations and the Rwandan government that he was plundering resources from the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo during the Ituri conflict.
Kazini was known in the army to be a fearless officer.
HE speaks gently, sports a well maintained moustache and maintains a smile most of the time. He smokes Rex Cigarettes and drinks Guinness beer. He loves live band music and is a regular at Club Obligatto in Kampala, where the famous Afrigo Jazz Band plays. It is said he owned a brass band called Umoja (unity) at Nateete, a city suburb.
On June 8, 2003 Kazini handed over command to Gen. Aronda Nyakairima at a function in Bombo Barracks. During the function, he lamented that he had failed to quell the LRA rebellion under his tenure. Kazini had earlier promised to resign if the LRA had not been defeated by December 31, 2002. The LRA still continue to terrorise people to date, having become a regional problem affecting DRC, South Sudan, and Central Africa Republic.
President Museveni directed then defence Minister Amama Mbabazi, to investigate Kazini and Brig. Henry Tumukunde, then director general Internal Security Officer, over creating ghost soldiers in the army pay-roll. The committee chaired by then Lt. Gen. David Tinyefuza recommended Kazini’s trial by the General Court Martial then chaired by Gen. Elly Tumwine.
In March 2008, Kazini was convicted and sentenced to three years imprisonment for causing financial loss and acquitted of abuse of office, forgery and uttering false documents.
After he appealed against his conviction, Kazini, who had spent some days in Luzira Prison, was released on bail pending the outcome of his appeal.
Kazini appealed to the Constitutional Court challenging his prosecution, trial and conviction by the court martial. The court on October 12, dismissed the petition.
Dissatisfied with the judgment of the Constitutional Court delivered on October 12, Kazini took the battle to the Supreme Court. Notice was served, and copied to the Attorney General and the Registrar of the Constitutional Court.
At one time, Kazini was embroiled in a love triangle when he assaulted a Kampala doctor, Robert Kagoda accusing him of having affairs with his girl friend.