Kampala, Uganda – The State House Anti-Corruption Unit has recovered a total of 1.73 billion shillings since its inception two years ago.
Addressing a press conference at the media centre on Tuesday about the achievements of the unit, Ofwono Opondo, the Executive Director of the Media Centre said that 146 people have been charged before the Courts of Law and these, 120 are public officers under interdiction and 26 are private entities, while 14 of these persons have been convicted.
Opondo says that of the 1.73 billion shillings recovered, 1 billion was recovered from Labour Export Companies that had taken money from desperate youths with the promise of getting them jobs in the Middle East while 738 million shillings was money recovered from air supplies from Gaming and Lotteries Board and returned to the Treasury.
The unit has received over 1,000 complaints from desperate youths against Benon Kunywana and Godfrey Kyalimpa both directors from Middle East consultants.
One of the labour export companies have been charged with attempted trafficking of 40 desperate youths to the Middle East and are currently before the International Crimes Division of the High Court for trial while other youths have been repatriated.
“Together with police, the Unit coordinated the return of 24 Ugandans that were being subjected to inhuman and degrading treatment in Oman, Jordan, Qatar, Dubai, and Saudi Arabia. Also, we caused repatriation of 06 dead bodies/remains.” Opondo says.
Opondo also says the Unit’s intervention in the inflation of food relief supply prices by top officials at the Office of the Prime Minister led to a reduction of the prices and saved government 8.6 billion shillings.
The officials who have been arrested by the unit include Kisoro South MP Sam Bitangaro, Christine Guwatudde Kintu, the Permanent Secretary OPM, Joel Wanjala an Accounting Officer and Martin Owor the Commissioner Disaster Management and Fred Lutimba Assistant Commissioner Procurement all from the Office of the Prime Minister.
Others officials are Patrick Nyakana Mabiho the Secretary Human Rights Commission, Wilfred Asiimwe Muganga, Rebecca Nassuna, Willy Agirembabazi and Tino Rebecca, all Principal Human Rights Officers and Tadeo Wamala, an accountant at the Commission.
Others are Edgar Agaba the CEO gaming and Lotteries Board and John Patrick Kazoora, the Manager Finance and Administration.
The unit has also arrested Achimo Ruth the Secretary Soroti University, Odong James the Internal Auditor, Omoding Samuel the Acting University Secretary, Otim Gilbert the Acting University Bursar and other staff of the University.
Others are; David Malinga Akol, Director Currency Bank of Uganda and City businessman Abid Alam who was charged with conspiracy to defeat justice arising from his interference in cases related to land disputes in Kassanda district that led to the torture, death and malicious damage of the property of residents of Kasanda among others.