RED FLAGS: Mbarara CAO & HR officer to refund over Ugx5M

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The Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee-PAC has been shocked by the accountability gaps & red flags as it grilled the Mbarara district Chief Administrative Officer-CAO Edward Kasagara and Principal Human Resource Officer Allan Kagaba for causing the district a financial loss of over Ugx5 million. Kagaba failed to account for ugx1.13M which he said he ‘mistakenly’ paid to some of the district staff, so it’s an overpay.




Chaired by Hon Martin Ojara Mapenduzi,the committee that spent three days in Mbarara starting Monday 23rd May 2022, said the queries arise from the Auditor General’s report for the financial year 2020/2021. During the interrogations, the committee unearthed that due to negligence, Kagaba overpaid the said amount as ex gratia and he has been directed to refund the missing funds. “We are not saying you stole that money but you didn’t perform what was required. When you cause financial loss to government by law you are required to recover that money and for that matter, you must repay that money before 15th June 2022,” Mapenduzi directed. The committee also directed that the CAO Kasagara recovers or refunds a total of ugx4.8 million he never deducted from the district and sub-county leaders in taxes. “We have also detected where certain deductions are not made especially the taxes. The law is very clear, when you are employed by government you are supposed pay tax [Pay As You Earn]. The CAO has to recover Shs4.8m. He has already recovered Shs1m and we have given him only up to the 15th of June,” Mapenduzi explained.




Hon. Ojara Mapenduzi and other MPs during the interrogations. The committee was further shocked by diversion of funds by the district officials meant for specific projects,which they  is MPs said is illegal and punishable. “Also the other Ugx601 million that was paid wrongly,we have directed our technical people to study their responses and we will take a decision where money meant for a particular activity was used for another unplanned activity, it is illegal and it causes financial loss to government”,he added. Part of the work of the committee is to help local government to improve service delivery. “We want them to improve it is not all about arresting and detaining because we are not the torture chambers, it is partly to help local governments to improve so as we hold them accountable,” he added. For instance, Mbarara district LG paid about Ugx2 billion to the contractor to construct Bukiro Seed School but PAC  was told by the LC V chairman Didas Tabaro that there are certain things that are not right. PAC is going to assess whether there is value for money or not.

Meanwhile, in Mbarara City, the committee was shocked to find that Ugx23.6 billion is earmarked for tarmacking 2.5kms of a road as part of infrastructure development. “Musita-Lumino road is 104kms and its cost was 207 billion but in Mbarara city 2kms of a road is costing government   23.6 billion, for sure an investigation needs to be done to unveil more from this contract so that we find out who is behind this,” Bugiri district Woman MP Agnes Taaka shocked. Investigations are underway to ensure public accountability and desired service delivery.  RISE NEWS UGANDA on TWITTER https://twitter.com/RiseNewsUganda/status/1529768612243951616?s=20&t=grKYmp_MuSomtXAxm4fpRQ




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