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Archive for the tag “John Ssimbwa”

A brief look into the IGG first report of 2018 with Lira District in FOCUS!

The Inspector General of Government (IGG) Irene Mulyagonja has recently published a new report, showing the corruption and the reported cases that has been sent to the IGG during the 6 month period. This report shows the key places where the complaints are about, which shows what kind of civil servants that has cases going or investigated. There also a major showdown of certain districts, which gets the most heat in this report. Clearly, they are picked up and shown the public, while others are kept in the archives. So I am showing the key aspects of where the complaints go and one key district that has been put on blast. That being Lira District, who together with others was also put on display. What is weird about that is the office of Lira is number 15 on the list of getting complaints. While the Central District and Kampala Headquarters has bigger numbers, but is not chosen to revealed for the public. Only district offices with less numbers are Kampala Regional Office (because all are delivered to Headquarter) and Gulu district office. So this been choice by the IGG to show their cases instead of the ones around the Central Government. That is how it can be perceived!

The Inspector General Report are clearly stating that the most common groups of people, which is mentioned in complaints are either directly individuals (public officials), District Administration/Local Government, Municipal & Town Councils, Head Teachers, District Service Commissions and sub county administration. In the time between January and June 2017, there was 330 complaints about Public Officials. Complaints about District Administration was 328. Municipal & Town Councils complaints was 144. The complaints concerning Head Teachers was 87. The District Service Commissions was 85 and sub county Administration complaints totaled to 68. This here is really showing where the state officials locally are misusing the public funds. It shows a warning sign of how people take advantage of the lack of paperwork and archives of procurement and also facilitation of the state reserves. That is why they could do this before the complaints come to the IGG.

IGG cases in Lira:

Alleged cause of financial loss by Principal Assistant Secretary, Lira District” (…) “Alleged mismanagement of Shs. 15,000,000/= meant for road maintenance by officials of Ojwina Division Council, Lira” (…) “Allegation of nonpayment of wages to former support staff by Lira Municipal Council” (…) “Report on investigations into alleged payments of salaries to ghost teachers and illegal appointments of Head teachers in Lira District Local Government” (…) “Alleged irregular remittance of Shs. 10M to Mr. Ario Benson’s account and subsequent deletion from the payroll by PPO, Lira” (…) “Alleged creation and existence of ghost primary school in Aloi Sub-county, Lira District” (…) “Alleged misappropriation of UGX. 9,000,000/= meant for the construction of roads in Adekokwok Sub-County Lira District” (…) “Alleged utterance of false academic documents by a Secretary at UTC – Lira” (…) “Alleged irregular earning of higher salary by a person at Lira school of Nursing” (…) “Alleged cause of financial loss by the Principal Assistant Secretary, Lira District” (IGG, P: 77-80, 2018).

I am just showing the alleged cases in Lira as well, as the main reports, since the Report itself should be question for lacking the alleged cases from Kampala Headquarters and Jinja Offices. It shown some cases from Arua, but very limited, since it was the third biggest place of complaints during the 6 month period. While other regions and districts had more open cases. I am really questioning why Lira was so in FOCUS, when the offices of Jinja, Headquarters and Arua had ten times more complaints than Lira did. Why are they not more evident in the report? What is the reason?

That is what we should ask and why the IGG are not revealing those complaint or keeping them on the low. Peace.

Reference:

Inspectorate of Government (IGG) – ‘BI-ANNUAL INSPECTORATE OF GOVERNMENT

PERFORMANCE REPORT TO PARLIAMENT – January to June 2017’ (January 2018)

Uganda – Amendments to the ‘Anti-Corruption Bill 2013’ – Important changes to the existing law

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It’s a proposed new amendment ‘Anti-Corruption Bill 2013’ that is dated back to 13th July of 2013. I will take the basic understanding of how the bill will be and what it can do if it gets into effect. The person behind this bill is Hon. John Ssimbwa who is MP of Makindye Division East. On the 7th of July 2015 this got passed in Parliament!

The important issues from the Memorandum:

First part is that is an extension and amendment of the ‘Anti-Corruption Bill 2009’. One of the main objectives of the bill is that the property of the offender the government can confiscate that from that legal person. That property will be controlled by the government and management by the public trustee appointment by the Minister in accordance with the Public Trust Act. One defect with the existing law is how to prove that set property was earned by the corrupt actions or indirectly by it. Because of this there is the reason for the amendment to the existing law.

Second part is how you define “property” and “political leader” which will entail more and describe broader in the new law after the amendment. In the new one the “political leader will be broaden the scope of the offence that caused the financial lost. Also figuring in “a company” to prove there are two “actors” in the actions of embezzlement, graft or general corruption. One new clause is also to incorporate Inspector General of Government (IGG) to service the court. And give more power to the Dirctorate of Public Prosecution (DPP) and IGG which will together restrict the owner of the bank accounts of the accused person. New clause is also to the persons who refuse to comply or give information to Special Investigator; with failure to follow the recommendation of the police will be incriminated, because with existing law there isn’t any response to it for the government. If for certain that a person is convicted for corruption for mandatory confiscation of any property to the person. And also in the amendment the person who will lose his property after being convicted will pay the cost for the transfer of the actual property.

Important changes:
From Section 20 setting in: “A person employed by the government, a bank, a credit institution, an insurance company, a company, a public body or political leader, who in the performance of his and her duties, does any act knowing or having reason to believe that the act or omission will cause financial loss to the Government, bank, credit institution, insurance company, a company, or public body commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding three hundred and thirty six currency points or to a term of imprisonment not exceeding fourteen years or both”.

From Section 63A:

  • Take possession and custody of any property under restraining or confiscation order:
  • Manage any property in respect of which he or she has been appointed a public trustee: or
  • Appoint the owner of the property to manage the property affected by a restraining order under the supervision of the Public Trustee:

(2) A Public Trustee appointed under this Act shall not be liable to any civil proceedings for any act done in good faith in the performance of his or her duty”.

From Section of 63B and G4A:

“The Minister shall make regulations for remuneration for the public trustee appointed under this act.” (…) “Where the court orders confiscation of property under section 64, the cost of enforcing the order shall be paid by convicted person”.

From the Section of 65:

“A Person is taken to have absconded if reasonable attempts to arrest the person under a warrant have been unsuccessful during the period of six months commencing on the day the warrant was issued, and the person shall taken to have absconded on the last day of that period”. 

Meeting between Public Trust Act and the Amendment of the Anti-Corruption Act:

What these amendments to the existing laws is focusing on the property of the convicted person and how it all will be transferred to a Trustee Fund. This fund will be in power of the Government with the Inspectorate of General of Government and Dictorate of Public Prosecution will be in charge of. In the end this leaves more funds and properties into the government that will transfers from convicted persons and companies to the Trustee Fund.

A matter remain on the ‘Public Trustee Act of 1937’ has some issues and therefore need to amendment to see what the government of Uganda need to recover the embezzled money and property. The law in general is setting the standard on how the trusts are set up.

First section: “The Minister, by notice in the Gazette, may appoint some fit and proper person to be public trustee for Uganda, and may in like manner appoint a deputy or deputies to assist him or her, and every deputy so appointed shall, subject to the control of the public trustee, be competent to discharge any of the duties and exercise any of the powers of the public trustee, and when discharging those duties, or exercising those powers, shall have the same privileges and be subject to the same liabilities as the public trustee”.

Third Section: “An agent shall, in all respects, act under the direction of the public trustee who shall not be answerable for any act or omission on the part of the agent which is not in conformity with the power or duty delegated by the public trustee or which shall not have happened by the public trustee’s own fault or neglect” (…) “An agent, other than an officer of the Government, shall find security to the satisfaction of the public trustee for the performance of his or her duties and may be remunerated either by salary or such fees as the Minister may from time to time by rule prescribe”.

Fourth Section: “The public trustee shall not accept any trust under any composition or scheme or arrangement for the benefit of creditors nor of any estate known or believed by him or her to be insolvent”.

Sixth section: “When the public trustee has been appointed trustee under any will, the executor of the will or the administrator of the estate concerned, after obtaining probate or letters of administration with will annexed, shall immediately notify the appointment to the public trustee in writing, and shall supply him or her with a certified copy of the will and of any trust instrument and other documents affecting the trust, and such particulars as to the nature and value of the trust property, and the liabilities, if any, attaching to such property or the holder of the property, and the names, ages and addresses of any beneficiaries under the trust, and such other information as the public trustee may consider desirable to obtain in any particular case”.

Seventh section: “If any property is subject to a trust, other than a trust which the public trustee is prohibited from accepting under the provisions of this Act, and there is no trustee within the limits of Uganda willing or capable to act in the trust, the court may on the application of any interested party or of the public trustee make an order for the appointment of the public trustee to be the trustee of such property; but where the application is not made by the public trustee, no such order shall be made without his or her consent”.

We can see the difference between the new law and the older Public Trustee Act of 1937 and the amendment on the Anti-Corruption Bill, which deals with the property of a felon and the consent part of transfer of the property. Especially when you see how it set limits on the government and how the applications of the public trustee where it specifically says in the Act of 1937: “no such order shall be made without his or her consent” while the Anti-Corruption Act Amendment says: “From Section 63A:

  • Take possession and custody of any property under restraining or confiscation order:
  • Manage any property in respect of which he or she has been appointed a public trustee: or
  • Appoint the owner of the property to manage the property affected by a restraining order under the supervision of the Public Trustee:

(2) A Public Trustee appointed under this Act shall not be liable to any civil proceedings for any act done in good faith in the performance of his or her duty”.

From Section of 63B and G4A:

“The Minister shall make regulations for remuneration for the public trustee appointed under this act.” (…) “Where the court orders confiscation of property under section 64, the cost of enforcing the order shall be paid by convicted person”.

As you see this gives the state a possibility to order and confiscate of property from the convicted person and also get the payment for the transfer of the actual property. So if this comes to effect and can take possession of it or custody when the person is under restraining. The Public Trustee will be under the IGG and follow the orders of the DPP.  This gives more power then what they currently have. So that the Directorates and Public Prosecutor get more powers when they have apprehended a suspect and get either suspend their money in accounts and also transfer the property of the convicted person.

This means those people that will get a stronger punishment and that the Public Trusts will soar in Uganda, if the IGG does it jobs and get bigger cases through the courts. This means that the minister who is in charge and making the Public Trustee funds has to be sober and in-charge to keep up his conduct and the supervision of the fund after transferring the actual property and freezing of the accounts.

It would be interesting to see the implicated changes of the law and also how the minister and Inspectorate of General of Government has to be sure that the property and accounts are parts of the charge. If these extra charges will make a difference in Uganda, is only time to tell because the way it will be seen is the actual results and if it benefits the court systems. Secondly if the transfers of properties and accounts go well, then the Government might over time get vast amount of monies from different accounts and also grand properties if the functions and prosecutions of corrupt politicians, governments’ officials, civil servants and businessmen get caught. Therefore the Trustee Fund under the Minister will be a giant over time and also need more resources to have accountability over it. Something that is natural with the pending issues and convicted people that will be hurt by this law if this amendment will be a new reality in Uganda. Peace.

Reference:

Bill Supplement No. 3 – Bill No. 7: THE ANTI-CORRUPTION (AMENDMENT) BILL 2013 (13.07.2013) in Uganda Gazette No. 34. Volume CVI dated 5th July 2013, UPPC, Entebbe Uganda Ordered by the Government.

THE PUBLIC TRUSTEE ACT of 1937 – Chapter 161

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