When Ofwono Opondo today said the Parliament bought 80 cars for the upcoming 64th Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference (CPC). I could help to recall the previous similar event at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in 2007. As with that time the sudden need for buying car for a short time period comes up.
Not only the reckless spending on visitors coming for a conference, but also the lack of tenders and procurement protocol. Just like last time, when the CHOGM taskforce just enforced a bid through a company owned by Minister of Foreign Affairs Sam Kuteesa. Who knows what happen this time around. Who owns the company that was procured from and by what protocol was it made?
Because, now the amount of cars is much more. We can wonder if they will be is idle and left behind, as the 30 BMWs left at the Ministry of Works and Transport post 2007. As the CHOGM cars was already not the newest model, but a two year old. Whose tender was questionable at best. Even the President questioned it in a letter back-in-the-day.
Therefore, when the Press Conference today, says the “Parliament” aka the state bought 80 cars or vans for the event. So, let it be clear, the Value for Money is peanuts and the usage minimal. The state would have been better off, renting all rentals and not buying. Which means they have to find ways of using them. Unless, they plan to store them of site at MoTW.
Surely, the VIPs could have used the old ones and leased cars. They don’t newly minted cars fresh from the factory or unused even. They surely just want to arrive and on-time to the conference itself. But, the government want to splash out money like no tomorrow.
We remember the procurement scandal surrounding the CHOGM. The state should be more careful with their ways of buying these cars. There is no proof of value of money, neither the way the tenders nor the budget was for it. Lastly, not plan for usage or whose need for these post-CPC.
That seems like a mismatch of work and also questionable spending at best. When the same government has done the same stunt a decade ago. It should be obvious, that they could have the capacity to do this again.
So, be warned… it is a scandal in the making, unless Ofwono knows something we doesn’t as it is not like the documents, the proof and purchase methods are proven at this point. Unless, a Parliamentary PAC is looking into it or the Auditor General looks through the paperwork. Which we only will know in the next budget year or something. Peace.
Now that there is a month or so away from the 64th Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference (CPC) in Kampala. When the 500 delegates from all the Commonwealth member states are coming to the Republic of Uganda. To be part of conference and work for a week.
By all means, the National Resistance Movement (NRM) and its handlers see this a opportunity to spread the good news, to show the grand side of the Republic and its nation. However, why I am writing is that I fear this will be another Commonwealth scandal.
Last time was the Commonwealth Head of Government Meeting (CHOGM) held in Kampala a few days in November 2007. Which in retrospect was a graft-party for the Prime Minister Amama Mbabazi and Vice-President Gilbert Bukenya, also Foreign Minister Sam Kuteesa. Who all were implicated in millions of dollars gone missing on tenders and spending on the CHOGM conference that year.
As we know that the same people and organizers were around. The same people running the ministries and having vital roles. We know, that the NRM and its high ranking officials might see a new opportunity to eat. Don’t be shocked if the CPC becomes a modern day CHOGM. It is 12 years apart, but the same President and his party at the helm.
I would not be shocked if the Office of the Prime Minister Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda, Foreign Minister Sam Kuteesa, Gen. Salim Selah and someone implicated in the State House would suddenly misuse allocated funds, which Keith Muhakanizi can explain nor anyone else. They will vanish in a tender, fake tent or even some VIP cars whose never gotten imported through a shell-company owned by high ranking officials. The IGG, Auditor General or Attorney General can implicate any of them, as they cannot find the paperwork, which also happen to go missing. As the state prosecutors doesn’t have enough evidence to produce a case against them. Don’t be shocked, it is just business as usual.
This is just me thinking loud. I wouldn’t be shocked or surprised if the CHOGM scandal in a new version for the CPC would happen. If it appear for us in late 2019 or in 2020 as the revision of budgets, the value of money reports and whatnot. They will reveal that some company, which happens to be in connection with high ranking officials, suddenly have vanished government funds.
Let’s wait and see. I hope I am wrong, but don’t be surprised if suddenly we have modern day version of CHOGM scandal. Don’t be amazed if the 46th CPC suddenly turned into a goldmine for the big-men at the NRM. Peace.
TDA loose yet another pivotal man:
Mr. Mahogany or should I say his Christian name Gilbert Balibaseka Bukenya the former VP of the Republic of Uganda who himself went independent after being kicked out of NRM. He has today or very recent for some reason kissed the ring of his former leader Yoweri Kaguta Museveni.
The professor has said this: “TDA was poisoned and people who are there are very greedy. President Museveni has the right qualifications to lead this country” (…)”On four occasions, I met four different people who came to ask me to go back to the NRM. On the first and second time, I was not convinced. I was convinced on the third and fourth time, when they told me president Museveni has some good ideas. President Museveni promised me to fight poverty and land matters” (Daily Monitor, 2015).
For a brother who turned independent after losing his position in the NRM. President Museveni took him down and changed leadership because he had a plan in 2011 to go against His Excellency. His journey and saying now that President Museveni is the right guy in 2015 seems weird. Even for a man who has been loyal and kept close to the President.
Reasons for this turn around are very dire:
“Sources say the group listed to Bukenya’s grievances against Museveni and later agreed with him that some of the issues he had raised were reconcilable” (…)”However sources told the New Vision that the two agreed that President Museveni would support Bukenya to defend his Parliamentary seat and campaign for him on top of securing for the former VP a position in the NRM highest decision making organ, Central Executive Committee” (…)”In return Bukenya would support and campaign for the President. Sources also said that former Vice President also requested he be appointed to cabinet in the next term” (Etukuri, 2015).
When you see this there will be more supporting of Pakalast-NRM ticket of Museveni. In turn he will go away for the unity of TDA that becomes smaller and smaller. With the FDC and Bukenya left the fold months before the actual event. Wonder if Norbert Mao, Akena, Otunnu and the other ones who still is a part of Alliance feels betrayed.
Bukenya has been bought for loyalty. He has done that before with CHOGM money. The indictment from 2011 says this:
“PROF. DR. GILBERT BUKENYA being a person employed as Vice President in the Government of the Republic of Uganda and Chairman of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) Cabinet Sub-Committee, on various dates between December 2006 and November 2007 within Kampala district did unlawfully and high handedly direct to be done arbitrary acts prejudicial to the interests of the Uganda Government, in abuse of his office; to wit; influencing and directing the award of the Contract for Supply of Executive Vehicles intended for use during Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) 2007, to Motorcare (U) LTD in total disregard of the laws, regulations and practices governing Public Procurements in the Republic of Uganda”.
If that tells what he can do and get gains then it isn’t a new thing from Prof. Gilbert Bukenya that he now will be bought by the NRM-Regime and in the end now get a position in the NRM CEC, the price his loyalty and support on the road on the Campaign for the Presidential Election for 2016. And all of this is a sad view for TDA and opposition that a deflected candidate can turn back to his fold again. This shows the weakness and also the power of reach that President Museveni still has over some of his former cadres. And for an outsider who was running for the Flag-Bearer for the Opposition Alliance of the TDA and when Amama Mbabazi got it. Then later totally go back to his former boss. This is a scary scenario and proves how little strength there is left in the TDA. Prof. Gilbert Bukenya has become a crony again. Become a part of the set-up of the NRM-Regime and given up. Mr. Mahogany is now going back for a secure paycheck. Sure I hope he has kept parts of the Exclusive Vehicles because this is just another foolish turn of events. On Independence Day of all days, proves that the Professor can’t be independent at all. Especially that he and some other can be bought with promises of positions in NRM-Organization.
Oh golly, this is from the same man that said this in February 2015:
““I am a professor of medicine and I am supposed to gesture while stressing a point. As a teacher, I am supposed to communicate well. There is no way you can say that I am the one copying Museveni. May be its President Museveni copying me. I am a professor and he is not. Who should copy the other?” (…)”I remember in 1986, President Museveni said the biggest problem of Africa is leaders who overstay in power. Unfortunately he has become that very problem. He is now Uganda’s biggest problem. The President should avoid killing the legacy he has struggled to build throughout his life” (…)”We went around the country asking voters to give Museveni one more term. But now, there is every indication that he is set to become a life president” (…)”President Museveni has been in power for over 29 years but our hospitals are in a terrible state. He has failed to even repair the 29 hospitals Dr. Milton Obote built. Whereas he calls him swine, Obote did better than Museveni in this area” (Mulondo & Oryema, 2015).
When a brother can say this and months later kiss the ring! You sure know that Museveni can bring everybody back or get them soften their approach against him. I am sure if Museveni wanted and could bring a sweet enough meal Amama Mbabazi would turn back. Though I know and others should by now know that Mbabazi was also a part of the CHOGM scandal as Bukenya. He has gone from being in opposition fighting the NRM-Regime for a little second. When he even in February this year said he was “Uganda’s Problem” to now in October he is saying “President Museveni has the right qualifications to lead this country”. There are surely shows the powers of what a few pieces of silver can do. Peace.
Daily Monitor – ‘Prof Bukenya makes U-turn, pledges support for Museveni come 2016’ (09.10.2015) link: http://www.monitor.co.ug/News/National/Prof-Bukenya-makes-U-turn-pledges-Museveni/-/688334/2906144/-/9qem5wz/-/index.html
Etukuri, Charles – ‘Bukenya makes U turn, supports Museveni’ (09.10.2015) link: http://www.newvision.co.ug/news/674310-bukenya-makes-u-turn-supports-museveni.html
Mulondo, Moses & Oryema, Kennedy – ‘Museveni is Uganda’s biggest problem – Bukenya’ (11.02.2015) link: http://www.newvision.co.ug/news/664720-museveni-is-uganda-s-biggest-problem-bukenya.html