Kampala-Former Army Spokesperson, Col. Shaban Bantariza has said that despite the suffering he was under during the trial in General Court Martial, he has forgiven all those who plotted to bring him down.
“I am happy that I am out but the most important thing is that I will use this acquittal to reach out to those who were behind the suffering. They should know that when you allege, you have to prove and in this case they failed to prove” Col. Bantariza told Eagle Online.
He has been acquitted of five charges of fraud that were preferred against him by the general Court Martial.
GCM in 2013 preferred the charges against Bantazira who was then serving as the Deputy Executive Director of the Uganda Media centre. Col. Bantariza was accused of having committed the crimes while serving as Director of National Leadership Institute Kyakwanzi. Some of the cases that were brought against him include alleged forgery, conspiracy to defraud, mistreatment of a subordinate and the diversion of 500 liters of fuel meant for the institute.
Another claim is that he received a tractor as a donation and purported to have bought it for Shs67m. But in his submission Col. Bantariza has denied the charges.
Out of the six state witnesses lined up, prosecution led only one witness Capt. Edson Muheirwoha to prove, among other things, that the Shs 67m was withdrawn from the safe after the payment voucher was filled by him.
In his ruling, GCM chairman, Maj. Gen Levy Karuhanga said the burden of proof was upon those prosecuting Bantariza to show evidence and as such, those accusing him had failed.