The Police attached to the State House Anti-Corruption Unit have arrested 15 senior government officials suspected to be involved in money laundering, abuse of office, false accounting, embezzlement and causing financial loss.
Most of the 15 suspects were yesterday picked from their respective offices while a few others were summoned for grilling at the Criminal Investigations Directorate (CID). The suspects are from three state agencies; the Uganda Human Rights Commission (UHRC), the Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC), and the Uganda Lotteries and Gaming Regulatory Board (ULGRB).
Detectives searched offices of some suspects and recorded statements from them.
According to the State House Anti-Corruption Unit, six UHRC officers, including the secretary of the commission and a director and were arrested, interrogated and later released on Police bond.
“Those officers are under investigation by the Police, following complaints lodged with the State House AntiCorruption Unit relating to embezzlement of sh100m,” an investigating officer, said.
“Investigations revealed that the money meant for official activities was irregularly disbursed to the private accounts of the heads of Kampala, Jinja, Hoima and Mbarara regional offices, from where it was withdrawn and embezzled,” the investigating officer, who preferred anonymity, said.
Equal Opportunities Commission
The investigators are probing accusations that five officers working with the commission misappropriated sh1b.
“Investigations were initiated following a whistleblower’s complaint to the State House Anti-Corruption Unit and the Police. Investigations are still ongoing and, so far, the secretary, senior accountant, auditor, and the human resource officer, have been asked to step aside, to pave way for investigations,” one of the detectives said.
The detectives are also investigating allegations that the suspects allegedly generated ghosts on the list of their retired staff, who are supposed to get gratuity. Sources said some junior staff reported to the State House Anti-Corruption Unit, raising a red flag of misappropriation of funds by their bosses.
Gaming Regulatory Board
Four ULGRB officials, including the chief executive officer, are under investigation over alleged misappropriation of sh950m, between 2017 and last year. “These officers are under investigation by the Police. Investigations were initiated following a whistleblower complaint to State House Anticorruption Unit,” a detective said.
The suspects are accused of inflating payments to service providers, allegedly to get kickbacks. In other cases, the suspects were accused of misappropriating cash, which was requisitioned and paid to them for activities that they did not undertake.
The officials under investigation are; Edgar Agaba (chief executive officer), John Patrick Kazoora (chief finance officer), and two compliance officers Collins Akampurira and Andrew Bwambale.