Details emerge: Why Masindi DHO was murdered in cold blood

The trio then cleaned the crime scene, dressed the deceased in new clothing, and dumped the body 50 meters away, outside the gate.

By Our Reporter

Masindi: On January 7, 2024, the residents of Masindi district woke up in shock after discovering Dr. Jino Abiriga, the former acting Masindi district health officer, murdered and his body dumped a few meters from his home.

Three people have so far been arrested in relation to the murder of the Masindi District Acting Health Officer.

According to police, the suspects, who include the deceased’s wife Betty Cherotich, 31, Namureng Joshua, 36, a builder of Tarobya Village in Bukwo district, and Kipsang Martin, 31, a carpenter of Roruk Village also in Bukwo district, were arrested by the investigating teams in the murder of the doctor.

Fred Enanga, the police spokesperson, noted that the facts gathered indicate that the couple started staying together as husband and wife in 2019, but it was established that the plot to murder Dr. Jino Abiriga began after his wife, Cherotich Betty, learned about a second relationship her husband had with another woman identified as Atuhura Suzan in Masindi.

He noted that Cherotich Betty first hatched a plot to kill Atuhura Suzan, but all the attempts failed, and she hired Kipsang Martin at a cost of two million and five hundred shillings.

“On the 11th of December 2023, Cherotic Betty hired a contract killer, Kipisang Martin, at a cost of 2.5 million Ugandan shillings to eliminate Atuhura Susan. One week later, on the 18th of December, she sent 500,000 to Kipsang Martin to come and target Atuhura Susan for elimination. However, this plot failed when the intended victim did not appear at the expected location,” he explained.

Enanga noted that after the failed attempt to murder Atuhura Suzan, Betty Cherotich shifted and plotted the murder of her husband, whom she accused of the death of their firstborn, the miscarriage of their twins, and for constantly insulting her as a bad performer sexually.

The police mouthpiece says that Betty Cherotich tasked Kipsang Martin with finding a second person to help her murder her husband, and on December 12, 2023, Kipsang Martin and Namureng Joshua started their plans to kill Dr. Jino Abiriga, which they eventually executed on January 6, 2024.

“On the 6th of January, around midday, they booked a room at Valentine’s Guest House. So during the night, she alerted them that the husband was deep asleep,” Enanga said, stressing that “They found the gate open, and she led them into the bedroom. They had two golf sticks. So they found when the victim was asleep, they hit him on the head with the handhoe stick, dragged the body to the floor, and then they slit the throat of the late doctor.”

The trio then cleaned the crime scene, dressed the deceased in new clothing, and dumped the body 50 meters away, outside the gate.

After the murder, the two male suspects disposed of bloodstained clothes in a pit latrine at Valentine’s guest house, where they had stayed. They left Masindi Municipality on January 7, 2024, at 5:30 a.m. for Bukwo.

”We reconstructed the crime scenes, recovered several exhibits, including the shoes of the deceased with the suspect, the clothes of the suspects, which they had on that day of the murder, and submitted samples for forensic analysis, which they recovered from Bulyasojo cell. We retrieved the bag from the latrine at Valentine’s Guest House. It had a pillow cover, a moping rug, a work ID for the deceased, and several other bloodstained clothes,” Enanga added.

All three suspects, including Cherotic, Kipisang, and Namureng, have admitted to their involvement in the murder.

The suspects are expected to appear before the court this week.

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