Drake Mugisha, the estranged husband of deceased city pastor Maggie Mutesi, on Wednesday appeared before the Nyarugenge Intermediate Court in Nyamirambo where he was charged with the murder of his wife.
Mutesi, known for leading monthly pastors’ prayer meetings at Kigali Serena Hotel, was found dead in her home in Gikondo on September 10 in the morning.
A few days after her death, Mugisha was arrested by the police as prime suspect after primary investigations by the CID showed that the pastor had died by strangulation and not natural death.
At the Nyamirambo-based court, prosecutor Christa Kamikazi read murder charges against Mugisha and ordered the suspect to be put on a 30-day remand pending further investigations.
Kamikazi said that there was a prima facie case against Mugisha citing an autopsy report done by Prof. Linette Tumwine Kyokunda, a medic at King Faisal Hospital, which concluded the manner of the pastor’s death to be “homicide.”
Among other things, the prosecutor cited the poor relationship between the couple for about three consecutive years during which they even filed for divorce in July 2016.
“A month before Mutesi’s death, Mugisha had inscribed on the wall of their bedroom that ‘I am no longer Mutesi Maggie’s’ husband,” she said adding that at one point, Mugisha threw the wife’s belongings out of their marital bedroom saying he did not need her any more.
Among other things, Kamikazi cited the desire for Mugisha to sell their house only to be stopped by Mutesi as well as his reluctance to contribute to his children’s school fees.
Mutesi was found dead on the couple’s marital bed.
In his defence, Mugisha, a retired military officer, contested the autopsy report saying that a one Arthur Murara, the deceased’s brother conspired with the medics and some people in CID to pin him on homicide.
Asked about their estranged marriage, Mugisha said that they were just like any other family that has conflicts every now and then.
“Which family lives without any sort of problem?” said a sobbing Mugisha adding that there was no possibility for him to sell the family house because it was under court receivership.
Jean de Dieu Murinzi, Mugisha’s lawyer, applied for bail, citing, among other things, his need to be out of the cell in order to take care of the couple’s three children who have neither been home nor attended school following their father’s arrest.
Court will today rule on the bail application.
Mutesi was 37 years old. She was the founder and leader of Heavens Gates Ministries, a Kigali-based Christian ministry.
Mugisha retired this year from Rwanda Defence Force at the rank of Captain.