Minister declines to commission school siting to mediocre work

The Minister for Presidency Esther Mbayo has refused to commission a school building that was constructed at Achaba Technical School in Oyam district over shoddy work.
Mbayo was on Wednesday invited by Oyam district authorities to commission the building that houses a multi-purpose hall, offices and school library which was constructed through a pledge by President Yoweri Museveni.

However, on inspecting the building, the Minister found that the work was incomplete and poorly done.
The floor of the building and some walls had cracks,the ceiling had not been fixed and all the six toilets are incomplete.
The minister was disappointed to learn that Multi-line Construction Uganda Limited, a Kampala-based construction firm that was sourced by the Ministry of Education and Sports had received all the money despite the poor work.

She wondered how and why the engineer who monitored and supervised the work would give the contractor the certificate for completion of the work. She blamed the district engineer and the school management Board for failing to supervise the work.
However, Oyam District Engineer explained that the work was directly supervised by the engineers from the Ministry of Education and Sports who he identified as Emmanuel Okello and Milly Okot.
Mbayo promised to appoint a committee of inquiry to investigate the manner in which the contractor was sourced and promised not to exonerate those implicated.
She suspects connivance by the members of the Board, the District Engineers, the school head teacher, engineers from the ministry of education and the contractor to swindle the money and that they must answer
The minister was on Wednesday in a fact finding visit of government initiated programs in Oyam district.

On May 5th 1999, President Museveni visited the school and found the community who had just returned from the Internally Displaced People’s camp struggling to put up the building when he pledged to support them with the completion of the building.

A budget was submitted to him and in the financial year 2011/2012 he gave 213 million shillings to complete the work. To date the work has not yet been completed.
Museveni’s support was part of his efforts to revamp the school that was vandalised by the rebels of the Lord Resistance Army in 1996. More than 20 students were abducted in the raid.
Five of them died in captivity including James Oming, Stella Aceng, Harriet Akuti, Christine Aou and one identified only as Okiye. Meanwhile, seven of the abductees returned home.
They include Okwir HP, Ketty Ayer, Betty Ejang, Martin Obel, Patrick Atim, James Adoko and Abong.



Minister Byabagambi’s company named in 3Bn Rural electrification scam

Karamoja Affairs Minister, Eng. John Byabagambi’s company has failed to pay over three billion Shillings it owes to Rural Electrification Agency.

Byabagambi is said to have fronted Ferdsult Engineering Services -a private electricity distribution service provider to Rural Electrification Agency (REA) for the deal to distribute power in parts of Western Uganda.

The company, in which Engineer Byabagambi is a board Chairperson, has allegedly defaulted payments to Rural Electrification Agency for nine years.

Information about the alleged debt emerged during a meeting of Parliament’s Committee on Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises on Tuesday. The Committee Chaired by Bugweri County MP Abdu Katuntu was considering the June 2015 Auditor General’s  report on Rural Electrification Agency.

The Committee learnt that the Company is run by close family members with strong links to government. Shareholders and Directors of Ferdsult include Owen Mulangira, Engineer John Byabagambi who doubles as its  Board Chairperson, Norbert Semilata, Enid Mbabazi, Mary Natukunda and Ferdinand Mugisha.

Enid Mugisha told the committee that she owns 25 percent shares in Fardsult. She is employed at Prime Minister’s Office. She is married to Ferdinand Mugisha, the Executive Director of the same company.  Ferdinand Mugisha formerly worked with Uganda Electricity Board. The other shareholder, Mary Natukunda is a sister  to Ferdinand Mugisha.

MPS also discovered l that Ferdsult also owes 5.2 billion Shillings to Uganda Electrification Transmission Company Limited.

Bonny Kizza, the Finance Director of Ferdsult confirmed to the committee that the company has been involved in power distribution and sale of electricity on behalf of Rural Electrification Agency since 2007 in Western Uganda.

He said that this business emanated from a ten year contract in which the Rural Electrification Agency on behalf of the Ministry of Energy.  He however attributed their failure to pay to the low income saying the the companies earnings is not enough to cover  operational expenses.

Godfrey Werikhe says his agency has been sending Ferdsult invoices of 30 million Shillings each month for payments but the money has not been paid. He said  Rural Electrification Agency only received 60 million Shillings from the contractor since it started business.

Bugweri County MP Abdu Katuntu tasked Rural Electrification Agency to explain whether it conducted due diligence before it entered a contract with Ferdsult.

Katuntu directed Ferdsult to sign a cheque to Rural Electrification Agency immediately but Kizza declined saying the company was soon winding up because it had financial challenges.

Budadiri West MP, Nandala Mafabi questioned why  Rural Electrification Agency would continue to work with a contractor for 9 years without receiving payments as stipulated in the contract.





Beti Kamya refutes claims that she abandoned her party for NRM

By Patricia Osman
Capital Gangster Beti  Kamya who was recently appointed as Minister for Kampala downplays suggestions that she has abandoned her political party the Uganda Federal Alliance. Kamya is the founder and president of the party made these clarifications during the Saturday 4th Capital gang .
However since her appointment last week many Ugandans have come out to say she is now working with the ruling NRM party. Kamya says this is not true adding that her heart remains. She also says that no one has asked her to change to the NRM party.