MALABA: The rising levels of corruption in Malaba Town Council is very alarming, The Investigator can reveal. During a consultative meeting in Malaba town council chambers, councilors and stakeholders decried at the worrying rate of fraud among technical staff in Malaba town council.
Hon. Imailuk Rogers Peter the LCV Councilor representing Malaba town council in Tororo district, revealed that there is a deadly virus that has engulfed the technical staff of Malaba town council and this has tainted the image of Malaba town council as a den for cutting deals.
Imailuk called for accountability and transparency on any actions and decisions among all technical staff and councilors in Malaba town council adding that there is need to probe how over UGX 19million shillings were approved to buy two electricity poles to connect electricity to Malaba town council.
He disclosed that the major reason for the increased loss of revenue and or fraud is because most technical staff in Malaba town council are not substantive(they are just acting in their positions) something which gives them bias that they could lose their jobs anytime and hence makes them get involved in fraud and corruption.
Recently, Onyango Robert the Assistant Health Inspector of Malaba town council was arrested and detained for mismanaging health funds meant to procure mosquito nests to benefit residents in Malaba town council. Similarly, Iputo Faustin, the Assistant Enforcement Officer in Malaba town council was suspended for causing financial loss to the council.
In a letter seen by The Investigator but issued by Ms. Irene Okuna the TOWN clerk to Mr. Iputo Faustin, it reads “Following several verbal warnings from the Chairman LCIII, Human Resource Officer and me, and one written warning, you have persistently caused council financial loss by taking money that is meant to enter council treasury and made it your personal money.
It is upon this background that you are hereby suspended for a period of one month”
Mr. Patrick Omelako Etyang an LC3 councilor representing persons with disabilities in Malaba Town Council says the major issue of mismanagement of funds in Malaba town council is now rampant and asks for an external audit with the help of the office of the IGG.
In 2013, Omelako advanced Malaba town council shs.10million and was to be repaid within a month at 20 per cent interest from October 21, 2013 but says the council has been paying him a deaf ear over his monies. He revealed that he now demands Malaba town council over 52millions shillings and they risk court action.
Hon. Latigo grace, the deputy chairperson LCIII confirmed that there is a deadly virus that is slowly eating up the treasury and staff of Malaba town council but was quick to say that because of the financial indiscipline of her predecessors, the council is currently running on debts because most monies where received upfront.
She however asked for an audit with the help of the office of the IGG of the council treasury from beginning the last quarter of the previous financial year to date to establish financial position of Malaba
However, Ms. Irene Okuna the town clerk Malaba town council says since many staff at the council are in acting positions, they have come up with a recruitment plan and she has sent it to the office of the Chief Administrative Officer, Tororo district and very soon Malaba town council will have most staff replaced.
She also informed the councilors and stakeholders that there is a restructuring plan coming up shortly where all the town agents shall be relieved off their duties because they have no qualifications and that she anticipates for new staff but urged the stakeholders to go slow as she has done her part by addressing the issue.
The arrest of senior civil servants in Malaba is not new. In 2006, the former Town Clerk and his deputy, the Mayor and the Secretary for Works were arrested on the orders of the Inspector General of Government. They were charged with embezzlement, abuse of office and causing financial loss to the tune of UGX 65 million shillings. The four were later interdicted.