The High Court in Mukono is set to sentence Mathew Kirabo this afternoon for the murder of his 19-year-old girlfriend, Desire Mirembe.
Kirabo, a 32-year-old qualified medical doctor, worked at Mulago Hospital’s emergency unit and Kawempe referral hospital during his five years on bail. At the time of her untimely death, Mirembe was a medical student at Makerere University.
Kirabo was convicted in absentia by Justice Henry Kaweesa Isabirye on May 30, 2022, for Mirembe’s murder after the court heard testimonies from 14 witnesses.
Before sentencing, Dr. Kirabo expressed his condolences to Mirembe’s family, describing her as a promising young woman whose life was cut short. He further expressed regret for being unable to mourn her due to his incarceration.
Kirabo stated that he had engaged private investigators to uncover the truth before maintaining his innocence.
Through his lawyer, Henry Kunya, Kirabo pleaded for leniency, requesting court not to impose the maximum penalty of death as sought by the prosecution, but rather grant him a chance to live and reform.
The court heard from the two prosecutors, Happiness Ayinebyona and Emily Ninsiima, who argued that Kirabo should be sentenced to death for his lack of remorse throughout the eight-year trial, his forgery of COVID-19 results to deceive the court into believing he was sick, his subsequent traditional wedding, and flight from the country.
He was arrested in Kenya by Interpol on September 12, 2023, and extradited to Uganda to complete the trial.
Mirembe’s father, Mr. Emmanuel Musoke, expressed ongoing trauma over his daughter’s murder, which cut short her promising medical career. He appealed to Justice Kaweesa to exercise his authority and impose an appropriate sentence on Kirabo, acknowledging that no punishment could bring his daughter back to life.