Ex-Rubavu mayor Bahame remanded

Former Rubavu mayor Sheikh Hassan Bahame, currently in custody in connection with bribery was on Thursday denied bail by Rubavu Intermediate Court.

Former Rubavu mayor Sheikh Hassan Bahame, currently in custody in connection with bribery was on Thursday denied bail by Rubavu Intermediate Court.

Bahame was arrested last month together with the former district notary, Judith Kayitesi.

 They were remanded for 30 days pending further investigations into their case.

The duo is accused of receiving a Rwf4 million bribe from a building contractor in order to fast-track the issuance of a land title.The contractor was identified as Adrienne Mukamitari.Kayitesi pleaded guilty to the charges.

Bahame, however, denied the allegations on Tuesday telling court that he was being framed as part of an elaborate plan to tarnish his image.

The former mayor had filed his bail application on grounds that   prosecution lacked evidence to prove his complicity in the case while Kayitesi argued that she had an advanced pregnancy.

 But court presided over by judge Hodal Edigard denied them bail, saying the reasons indicated in the application were not convincing enough and they had committed a serious crime which undermines the growth of the economy.

The court was packed to capacity by curiuos residents, who turned up to witness the proceedings.

Bahame’s driver, one of the prosecution witnesses pinned his former boss, alleging that they discussed the bribery deal with Kayitesi on phone.

The court also heard that before Mukamitari and her husband offered the bribe to Kayitesi, the former notary telephoned Bahame to get confirmation that he would solve their problem in less than two weeks.

On conviction, bribery attracts a jail term of between five and seven years and a fine ranging from double to ten times the amount of the bribe received under Article 641 of the Penal Code.