By Wetondo Denis Julius
Manafwa district in Bugisu sub region is on fire after the Resident District Commissioner (RDC) went to the media revealing how a section of the district leaders connived to defraud pensioners’ of their money.
Last week, Ahmed Washaki posted on his Facebook page that the Manafwa District Principal Human Resource Officer, Betty Namono was in detention in Morukatipe prison in Tororo over corruption related charges.
In his post of 25th February 2021, Washaki alleged that in connivance with the Chief Administrative Officer and some political leaders, Namono using Duck Hill Microfinance defrauded pensioners and salary earners in the district of over Shs801 million.
“Principal Human Resource Officer, Manafwa District, Ms Betty Namono, remanded to Morukatipe Prison last week is expected to appear again to High Court Mbale today,” Washaki’s post on Thursday 25th February 2021 last week started.
“charged with alleged obtaining of over Shs801M from Duck Hill Microfinance by false pretense. This was after a similar amount was recovered by IGG from Duck Hill Microfinance after it had been found that overtime the PHRO, then CAO Otai and CFO Bichahcha had allegedly deducted workers’s salaries and pensioners’ s money under the guise of salary loans recovery that never existed using Duck Hill Microfinance.
She is one of the list of corrupt civil servants who have messed up not only Pensioners but also other salary and gratuity. This has been a racket involving some of the district political/Technical leaders.
It should also be noted that earlier on, the then CAO Otai, and the CFO Mr. Bichacha were interdicted for conniving with Ministry of Finance Officials to embezzle close to Shs500M through non- existing registered groups in Manafwa district,” Washaki’s post read.
In response to these media utterances, the LCV Chairman, John Musila has threatened to drag Washaki to court for uttering defamatory statements.
Musila who spoke to this reporter on Monday 1st March, 2021 said although Namono was arrested over a missing Shs801 million, the money was neither for pensioners nor salary earners. He added that the money was a personal loan Namono took from the Microfinance and failed to pay back.
Manafwa district local government is going to take legal actions against Ahamada Washakie the resident district commissioner for defamatory words he uttered in media this week.
“Washaki has spread wrong information everywhere that 801 million shillings was illegally deducted from salaries of civil servants and pensioners by Namono in connivance with district chairperson and CAO under the guise of Duck Hill Microfinance with the aim of remitting loans they obtained-, which is utterly wrong,” Musila said.
He also says that Namono’s arrest has no connection with swindling of public of public funds as alleged by the RDC arguing that the matter was between Duck Hill Microfinance and Namono as a person for delaying to pay back 801 million shillings she got from their last year as a loan.
The LCV chairperson warned that as district executive they have agreed and resolved to take legal action against the RDC for tarnishing the name of the district, office of LCV chairperson, and human resource office and of the CAO.
However, Ahmed Washaki when contacted laughed off the threat urging the district leadership to go ahead and sue him.
Washaki who says, he has evidence of how the racket operated said;
“After getting complains from civil servants about illegal cutting of their salary, i wrote to IGG office and they responded and recovered 801 million shillings that the Principal Human Resource Officer in connivance with offices of the district chairperson and CAO illegally deducted.”
Washaki insists that the illegal deduction of pensioners’ and civil servants salaries is the reason Namono is behind the bars.
He also revealed that the recovered Shs801 million was transferred back to consolidation fund.
Washaki vowed to continue cracking down on corrupt officers in the district without being intimidated by anybody.
According to recent IGG annual report 2020, Manafwa was among the top 11 most corrupt districts and agencies in Uganda.