Free Uganda

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  • in reply to: Politicians Don’t care About Ugandans #204860
    Free Uganda

    2019 will be remembered as a year which started with Kizza Besigye threatened to “remove” Dictator Yoweri Museveni from power before end of the year! Instead, the year has ended with him declaring to stand against Dictator Yoweri Museveni in 2021 general elections! Not only does Kizza Besigye know that he will lose for the 5th time, but he is also the man who says that elections can’t remove Dictator Yoweri Museveni from power! So why is he standing again?

    Kizza Besigye with due respect told FDC supporters that “he is not fighting for them, but he’s fighting to liberate himself”! That’s very funny!! What is it that Kizza Besigye is liberating himself from when he has businesses running, getting gov’t contracts, and his wife gets high profile jobs supported by President Dictator Yoweri Museveni?
    If Kizza Besigye is not fighting to liberate the jobless youths, the mothers who die giving birth, the 350 newborn children dying every day due poor healthcare; if Kizza Besigye is not fighting for the poorly paid police officers and teachers, for the young girls being sold into slavery; for young boys and dropping out of high school every year due to lack of school fees, if he’s not fighting for Ugandans who are losing their lands, then what is he fighting for?

    In Uganda today, we have two struggles! The first struggle is for us who want change and a break from captivity imposed on us by Bushmen who came to power led by Dictator Yoweri Museveni and Kizza Besigye as his personal doctor; both sharing Winnie as their girlfriend! The second struggle, is by those Bushmen who are still fighting to tighten their grip on power, continue plundering the country and enslaving Ugandans indefinitely! So, when Kizza Besigye says that the struggle they fought for is not over yet, at the same time he’s not fighting for the suffering ordinary Ugandans, it clearly shows which struggle he is spearheading!

    In summary, Fellow Ugandans who want change, we all fell for Kizza Besigye ‘s deception in the past, because he was not yet exposed!

    in reply to: The Members Of Parliament that Betrayed Uganda #204792
    Free Uganda

    Betty NamboozeBetty Nambooze was never legally recruited in DP also. After being caught ready handed with corruption envelop at CBS radio by police in early 2000s, she was taken to jail. Elias lukwago with the help of former ssenkagale ssebana kizito tried their best to save her from the coolers of luzira Prison.

    The high court convicted her but thanks to Elias Lukwago who managed to challenge the ruling and won her freedom on appeal. From there she declared her self a DP member since she was being pursued by Rev. Bakaluba mukasa her fellow NRM member. Mr ssebana helped her with some financial boost after prison.

    So she didn’t enter DP from the smallest unit at the village as she wanted chameleon to do. She also entered from Kampala through Mr. Ssebana kizito and Elias lukwago . Betty Nambooze  you were in NRM working first as Mukyakamukyaka official(Indoctrination) and later as Head of enforcement Mukono T.C. ,when you joined DP from Kampala you also started aspiring for higher position of MP mukono north. So let Chameleon be.

    You and him are the same,both you were in NRM working for Dictator Yoweri museveni, you both entered DP the same way and you all wanted high offices as soon as you entered the party. The only difference between Betty Nambooze  and chameleon is that you left NRM at different intervals.

    in reply to: Tribalism in Uganda is Real #204791
    Free Uganda

    Rwot Awich reigned as Rwot of Payira Kingdom from 1890-1946)
    His heroic deeds include:
    1886: His decisive victory in the war between Pader/Arab/Nubian forces versus Pajule/Payira combined forces sent a strong message to the Arabs. The armies of Pader and their Arab/Nubian allays suffered a humiliating defeat and as a result, when the Arabs were petitioned by Rwt Ogwok of Padibe the following year in 1887, to join Padibe and wage war against Payira, the Arabs were eager to avenge that defeat.

    The combined Padibe/Labongo/Arab/Nubian force waylaid Rwt. Labwor Rwotcamo-wod-Awino and his Payira convoy. The Arab force was led by Awash Effendi based at Lado while the Assistant Commander was Salim Effendi(s/o Mohamed Effendi).The Padibe force and their Arab allies sprang a surprise attack on Rwt Chamo’s convoy and achieved easy victory as Payira men were caught completely unawares. Rwot Chamo’s convoy was scattered and the people fled in disarray, leaving their king undefended. A Padibe man named Cakai Lukiromoi is said to have been the one who speared Rwt Chamo to death, for which he earned the chivalry ‘moi’ title ‘Lukiromoi’.

    The Arabs then went on and did what only the Arabs can do best; they beheaded Rwt.Chamo and took the severed head with them. According to another Nubian, Moorjan Effendi based in Gulu at that time the severed head of Rwot Chamo was wrapped in a white linen cloth and taken to Lado via Dupile by non-other than Awash Effendi, the Arab military Commander. It was from Lado that Emin Pasha (Edwardo Schultz), the last Governor ruled Equatoria, from 1878 to 1886, the year Egypt gave up responsibility over Equatoria.
    1901-1902: Rwot Awich was arrested by Captain Harman and tried by the British Trouble Shooter, Delme Radcliffe (aka Langalanga), so knick- named in Juba (Pidgeon) Arabic because he was restless; he was all over the region, trouble shooting. Following the ruling in that court Rwot Awich was detained by the British colonial administration, more likely because he was seen to be sympathetic to the Omukama Kabalega of Bunyoro.

    He stubbornly, and rightly refused to repatriate the refugees, Nubians, Banyoro and the Omukama’s children who had fled from the combined British/Buganda army which defeated Omukama Kabalega’s army, in 1893. His objection was based on a deeply rooted Acholi traditional moral belief about the sanctity of human life.

    The traditional religious Acholi belief, holds that if he were to send back the refugees to face possible death then the souls of the deceased would come back to haunt him, if they were killed! Perhaps needless to say that time has vindicated Rwot Awich for upholding this very important principle of Acholi’s criminal justice system. He held steadfast Acholi’s high moral ground.

    Quite simply he was ahead of his time as it took Europe, the USA and other major nations of the world two world wars and over fifty million deaths to come up in Paris with the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights (UNDHR) which was adopted by the UN General Assembly on December 10th, 1948. Within the four rights enshrined in the charter is the right of asylum, i.e. Anyone having well-founded fear of persecution in his/her country of origin became entitled to seek refuge in a neighbouring country and the host nation, since then is under a legal obligation not to repatriate such a person to face near certain death or persecution.
    1912-1919: Rwt Awich was again rearrested based on a trumped up charge that he was in possession of illegal gun (luduku taci, i.e. 303 rifle) which had gone missing. Rwt Awich’s own sub-chief, Jago Aluca of Patira, testified against him in an ill-constituted court presided over by the Resident D C Mr Bens (aka Benge) in January, 1912.

    This make-shift court sentenced Rwt Awich to another period of detention lasting eight years. He was again detained in Kololo, Kampala.”Kololo” hill, now a VIP residential area in Kampla was named by him. It is derived from Acholi word “Kololo” meaning single or alone/lonely. Immediately following his release in December, 1919. Following his initial detention, he went out of his way to meet the British missionary Albert Lloyd in Hoima and requested him to open up similar schools as he saw in Buganda and Bunyoro in Acholiland.

    Indeed in June, 1904 Albert Lloyd travelled to Acholiland where he established the first Anglican Mission at Keyo, Lamogi division in 1904.
    In short what makes Rwt Awich stand out head and shoulder above other Rwodi in Acholi is that he resisted all foreign invaders both violent invaders(Arabs) and the more peaceful but subtle and guileful invaders, i.e. the Europeans. Moreover most of the wars Payira fought were either retaliatory, or were for just causes, i.e. “causa belle” or lapii.
    Out of about ten of Payira’s inter clan wars only about three can be classified as wars of aggression. Fr J P Crazzolara. In his third volume “Lwoo Clans” page 500, he writes: Ogwok who committed suicide in 1924, entangled Padibe in many wars and with the aid of the slave traders, whom he called for his assistance was responsible for much suffering over a large area of Acholiland.
    Similarly Rwot Lakidi of Paimol who fought more than ten inter clan wars, most of them were wars of aggression against neighbouring fellow Acholi clans. For instance, Rwot Lakidi did wage a war against Lira Palwo to assert his claim over “kono udo”, i.e. ostrich feathers. In his last and most memorable war in October, 1918, Rwot Lakidi and his Commander, Mr Ogal Luwamoi went all the way to Ethiopia, to recruit Ethiopian(Munu-Lucamcwa) mercenaries, returning via Turkana region in Kenya to wage war on Rwot Amet of Lira-Palwo.

    In a dawn raid on that fateful day they attacked Rwot Amet’s county headquarters’ residence, when he was away on a visit to Lira, his village.
    During the raid the two Acholi catechists, Jildo Irwa (of Labongo) and Daudi Okello (of Payira) were martyred. The two Catholic martyrs were recently (2002) beatified by Pope John Paul 11. It is the first step towards their recognition as Christian saints. The next step is their canonisation, after which they joined the list of many recognised martyrs of the Catholic Church worldwide.

    in reply to: Tribalism in Uganda is Real #204790
    Free Uganda

    We have to get anti-nepotism laws in this country for a reason, mwegabanya emirimu and you get very rich combined with stinking corruption then you move around kampala abusing and threatening everyone….When dynasties come into power, the relatives are unsackable. Nepotism matters. Money matters. Connections matter. Qualifications certainly don’t, let’s focus on this…..To make significant progress in Uganda, we must actively fight these five giant evils:

    •Chauvinistic Tribalism

    •Religious fundamentalism



    •Nepotism/Corruption in high places

    Corruption leads to nepotism, which is quite prevalent in our country. The best way to tackle nepotism is social awareness. In the presence of good governance, there is honesty, integrity, transparency, accountability, and responsiveness.

    in reply to: Robberies Targeting Mobile Money Agents in Uganda #204789
    Free Uganda

    Betty NamboozeYouth in Mukono Municipality, under their umbrella Organisation; Mukono Youth Platform have released a statement, castigating the area Member of Parliament, Betty Nambooze, over the recent remarks she made on social media, alleging torture of one, Doreen Magezi, in Jordan.

    In a statement released to media at Makerere University Guest House on Wednesday, the youth said Nambooze’s remarks tantamount to hate speech against the youth who are struggling to make ends meet, through foreign employment.

    “Hon. Nambooze has failed to distinguish between Trafficking and Streamlined Labor Externalisation. She has fallen flat to distinguish between slavery and Labor externalisation which is now a global business supporting third World economies”, reads the youth statement in part.

    They further accused the Legislature of spreading harmful propaganda and lies. They said its is not the first time Nambooze is reckless with her mouth. “She is a hater and typical liar.

    She has lied to the whole Constituency she represents and comes to Kampala to make noise. In 2017, Hon. Nambooze promised us Jobs of which she has never delivered. The same person promised the youth capital in form of money but she does not pick her phone calls anymore”, the statement further reads.

    The youth say, their legislature has made them became desperate, which is why they decided to take on the decision to be externalised to the Middle East countries.

    “We have never regretted on that decision because now we can ably look after our families, we have built homes, land, educating our children and busy looking for an opportunity to return back. There are very many benefits from this sector which may not be tangible in form of money like skills”, they added.

    The youth are now urging Nambooze to desist from shifting the blame to the privately registered businesses, away from Governments negligence to monitor and ensure that their welfare is enforced as per agreements.

    in reply to: Tribalism in Uganda is Real #204784
    Free Uganda

    Ronald Muwenda MutebiThe High Court in Mukono has summoned Kabaka of Buganda, Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II to defend himself against accusations of land grabbing.
    The complainants include; Abby Mutyaba, Christopher Katende, Paul Kaliga and Charles Mugambe – all residents of Nyanama –Buwera Village, Ssi Sub County, Buikwe District.
    They accuse the king of unlawfully taking their grandfather’s estate measuring 122 acres on Block 472, Plot 6 in Nyanama- Buwera Kyagwe County, Buikwe District.

    The Kabaka is sued together with three other people including; Mr Elbright Ssemboga Kalule, a city businessman, David Nsereko, a Buganda Kingdom official and the Mukono District registrar of titles.
    However, Mr Nsereko, who is one of the defendants and an adviser on Kabaka’s private land in Buganda Kingdom said they are ready to defend themselves in court.

    “We are ready to defend ourselves in court because the piece of land we sold belonged to the Kabaka and we followed all processes,” he said in an interview on Tuesday.
    Through their lawyers of Baganda and Ssekatawa Advocates, the family claims to be the rightful owners of the contested land, which they inherited from their grandfather Yosufu Mukasa who was working in Kabaka’s palace back in the days.

    They claim the original duplicate of title got lost and the family tried to apply for a special certificate of title but failed because Mr Kalule and Kabaka had already claimed ownership of the same land.
    They want court to issue an eviction order against Mr Kalule from the land and cancel titles issued to him. They also want a declaration that the family is the rightful owner of the land until the main suit is heard and disposed of.
    The Kabaka and other defendants have up Thursday to file in their defence.

    in reply to: Tribalism in Uganda is Real #204783
    Free Uganda

    University admissions on government sponsorship, some regions are given social work social administration, education, project planning and management even if they passed with good grades “high points” while one region students are given professional courses like law, doctors with the same grades like those who are given SWASA

    Free Uganda

    The bazzukulu ba Nambi have a proverb that ” lwoyagaliza mukka kitawo lutta Nyoko”
    literally meaning what the bad luck you wish your step mum can end up killing your mother.
    whatever u don’t want to happen to u, you shouldn’t wish it to your fellow countrymen.
    Mr Museveni has done derservice to this nation and as we talk since he fused the state with the Government, many don’t know the duties of the Fountain of Honour, sometimes u see him officiating opening of water taps, birthday parties, chief mourner, opening of small gardens and fail to do his cardinal duty as prescribed in the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda.

    People are nolonger interested in his speech coz it lost trust and meaning, he has never brought balance sheet in SONA to see what he promised to do, what he has done, what is finished and what is left.
    It’s like the kids at home when the father fails to carry out his cardinal duties, the kids may end up not knowing the duties of Dad, he serves meat, washes utensils, clean the house, bathe kids, cooks, pays fees, while his wife is also helping, kids are left in tatters.
    the family end up without recognising the head of the family and at the end every kid feels he can do what Dad does.

    In Uganda people have resorted to all avenues which cause degeneration of moral values, words of hate, blackmail or wish others death because they don’t look at things from the same page.

    The Democratic principles to belong to any thinking and becomes our duty to persuade, convince, educate, senstise and wow them to the side which we feel is the best to take the country forward without scuffle or hindrances through intimidation and blackmail.

    Let’s accord respect to each other if we also feel to be respected at the end, we design mechanism for corporate debate , political maturity such that we are looked as alternative to the existing regime not worse than the oppressor.
    Uganda belongs to us all
    I stand to be corrected

    For God and my country

    Nkonge Sultan Ahmedie
    Kawempe- Kampala

    Free Uganda

    “People Power supporters should start a campaign called SAVE BOBI WINE FROM NOBERT MAO…Bobi Wine God had helped him in politics he should not carry the luggage of failures to bring them back on top…There is no difference between Mao and Besigye, they are all under mafiarism. People Power has started taking over universities even without Bobi Wine campaigning for those Guild President, that’s clear proof that Bobi Wine is bigger and stronger than these failures…Bobi Wine don’t kill ur political career, Mao is being used by mafias, Mao and Besigye are the same. Bobi Wine would have been with Muntu than Mao”

    Free Uganda

    Whoever is recklessly attacking H.E Bobi Wine is either mistaken or dreaming or hallucinating but these diehards must be informed that we have shifted our support from Dr. Kizza to Kyagulanyi. The evolution of change in Uganda will be just like that…..reform agenda to FDC and now people power. The relevance of impotent men like Besigye, TVO, and others who have failed to let us win elections for four consecutive times must stop. Let us try some one else who by far will challenge the musevenism.

    Free Uganda

    Crane Bank made fictitious payments worth Shs 167bn to a ghost company known as Interdico as part of a wider scheme by businessman Sudhir Ruparelia’s associates to siphon money from the financial institution, a fresh forensic investigation has discovered.

    The report revealed that Crane Bank registered a Shs 200bn spike in the value of Crane Bank’s buildings in 2014 where the value of land and buildings rose from Shs 81bn to Shs 281bn within the year.

    This, auditors said, was part of the clandestine ploy by Crane Bank to misrepresent its performance to project the image of a profitable institution.

    In the end, this would help Crane Bank to issue share bonus shares worth billions of shillings among the institution’s owners.

    How it started

    Earlier in 2012, Crane Bank’s directors had communicated their intention to issue bonus shares to the shareholders through capitalization of retained earnings and in effect increased the bank’s total paid up capital from Shs 100bn to Shs 210bn.

    However, BoU declined to approve the request on account of lack of enough retained earnings to support the intended bonus share issues.

    The media has seen BoU’s rejection of Crane Bank’s request, showing Sudhir’s schemes, which eventually led to the bank’s downfall, did not start recently.

    In another instance, Crane Bank tried to get BoU’s approval to issue Shs 110bn worth of bonus shares.

    BoU turned down the request on grounds that the bank’s retained earnings as per the audited 2011 financial statements was Shs 73bn and therefore not enough to cover the intended bonus shares.

    These documents prove BoU had on several occasions nipped Sudhir’s alleged fraudulent plans in the bud.

    BoU’s refusal meant that Crane Bank had to put on hold the planned bonus share issue.


    However, Crane Bank needed to achieve its set target of Shs 110bn worth of retained earnings to be able to actualize the planned issue of bonus shares.

    Auditors said in a report restricted as ‘confidential information for the sole benefit and use of Bank of Uganda’, that the falsification of the financial reports in 2012 was “part of a two-pronged approach that also involved under provisioning of non-performing assets with the intention of accumulating enough retained earnings for the suggested bonus issue.”

    Fake company Interdico

    Since Crane Bank claimed a spike of Shs 200bn in the value of buildings which created the impression that the bank was very profitable; auditors hoped to find genuine construction payments, contracts with contractors, architectural and engineering designs, bills of quantities, construction permits from municipal councils and certificates of work done as confirmation of the actual costs incurred in the construction.

    Interestingly, all auditors could be provided with were “payment vouchers” in support of the alleged construction expenses.

    “A further review of the spike in the value of buildings showed that it resulted from suspect payments to two companies; Interdico Limited Uganda and AI Construction Limited with the bulk of $64.2m (Shs 167bn) paid to Interdico,” the updated audit report reads in part.


    Interdico was incorporated on February 25, 2013 with registration number 163335 and its shareholders were listed by Crane Bank as Arab Ibrahimbin Mamadbin and Marhiyani Ashwin Manji.

    PwC auditors said “other than the incorporation documentation, Interdico does not have any other field documents at the registry. It is also not registered with URA.”

    A deeper investigation shows Interdico’s indicated location in the registration documents – Suite Number 63, Plot 4 Pilkington Road, Kampala, belongs to the law offices of Frank Tumusiime & Co Advocates, who denied having knowledge of the company.

    Additionally, the telephone number indicated on the invoices was not registered on the Airtel network.

    It was discovered that Interdico had an account with Crane Bank but the account opening forms and system mandates were not available.

    This account was also not migrated from Branch Power to T24 during the bank’s system change over in February 2015 as it had been closed in March 2014.

    It was impossible to establish who the account beneficiaries, agents or signatories were.

    Auditors believe the account documents and file were destroyed and the system mandates deleted yet the Financial Institutions Act (FIA), 2004, provides that a financial institution keeps such records for not less than 10 years.

    They further hinted on the possibility that actually the account opening documents and file were never created as required by law.

    Nevertheless, auditors observed that the “supporting documentation provided in respect of the Interdico payments was suspicious especially in simplicity of the invoices. Through computer forensics we traced the draft invoices to a deleted folder within the computers allocated to two Crane Bank employees within the finance department. These employees were Vivek Sharma (Head of Finance) and P. K. Gupta (Deputy MD).)”

    The recovered documents show that the invoices were created on Gupta’s computer on January 28, 2014 at 9:56am and deleted on 24 September, 2016.

    “Between them, Sharma and Gupta appear to have prepared a total 33 invoices in the months of January and February 2014 amounting to $65.14m (Shs 170bn),” reads the audit report compiled at the instructions of Bank of Uganda.

    Within the same folder in Sharma’s computer, investigators found a ‘draft special resolution to Interdico to open an account’ with Crane Bank.

    When Sharma and Gupta were interviewed, they both denied knowledge of the draft invoices in their computers.


    The duo claimed they received “signed invoices” from then Managing Director A.R. Kalan.

    However, when confronted with the evidence, while not admitting to preparing the invoices, they admitted that the January and February 2014 Interdico Payments were “fictitious payments aimed at concealing a ‘hole’ in the Nostro account (bank account held in foreign currency in another bank – in this case it was the Deutsche Bank – Ed.)”

    The investigators added: “We found that personnel in the IT department would be used to pass the Interdico entries in the back end of Branch Power. Some of the entries passed in the account would have the contra entry as the same account so as to hide the destination of the money. These entries would be passed after 8:00pm in the evening when the bank was closed.”

    The IT staff who talked to auditors said Sharma would “go with a breakdown and analysis of transactions that he would instruct them to pass in the back end of the system. Sharma would then takeaway the documents with him after the transactions had been effected.”

    As such auditors said Crane Bank’s directors did not give complete, true and fair view of the financial position of the bank, its financial performance and cash flows in accordance with International Accounting Standards and the FIA.

    This was due to “clear manipulation of the bank’s accounts be senior management in order to show year to year growth…there was also blatant forgery of documents purported to be invoices from Interdico and uttering of the same to bank for payment. Forgery and uttering of false documents is an offence under the penal code.”

    Conviction on these offences attracts sentences of over 10 years in jail.

    Free Uganda

    A United Nations report has pinned Ugandan gold companies, African Gold Refinery Ltd (AGR) and Bullion Refinery Ltd, of benefiting from gold smuggled from the volatile Eastern Republic of Congo.

    The serious accusations against AGR come against the backdrop of the resignation of businessmen Barnabus Taremwa and Richard Kaijuka from the gold refining company based in Entebbe.

    The two businessmen left the company which they co-founded with outgoing Chief Executive Officer Alain Goetz after the latter fell short of putting in place mechanisms of identifying gold smuggled into the country.

    Now the Group of Experts on the Democratic Republic of the Congo who report to the United Nations Security Council say the activities of AGR could attract sanctions.

    “Two independent sources associated with AGR and Bullion Refinery Ltd. told the Group that the companies were reluctant to disclose the names of their suppliers because they were aware that their activities were not always legal,” the report to the Security Council reads in part.

    “In fact, documents concerning a supplier for AGR obtained by the Group show the risk of contamination of the supply chain with gold illegally sourced or traded from the Democratic Republic of the Congo.”

    According to the investigation, the supplier, a Congolese national based in Bukavu who provided AGR, in October 2018, with gold worth more than $3 million, travelled with an official document, delivered five months earlier, identifying his occupation as that of an electrician.

    The supplier declared to AGR that the gold was sourced from Tanzania.

    Initial investigations conducted by the Group suggested that the individual was used as a broker by many Bukavu-based gold smugglers.

    AGR did not respond to the Group’s inquiry as to whether it had a policy to verify the accuracy of statements made by Congolese nationals who claim that the gold they sell was not sourced from the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

    Highly placed sources told us that AGR continues to receive gold from people of all walks of life without determining the source hence being a safe conduit of smuggled gold.

    Usually, gold dealers carry licenses showing the source of the gold especially mines and also authorisation of the dealerships.

    “There is no evidence to suggest that AGR imports gold through proper custom channels,” reads a government briefing on the operations of the old company.


    The findings of the UN experts could lead to Uganda facing sanctions for hosting a facility that exports gold obtained from conflict areas.

    UN investigators said they requested the names of suppliers from AGR and Bullion Refinery Ltd. in order to verify whether the suppliers were involved directly or indirectly in any sanctionable acts in DRC.

    In the letters, AGR reiterated its previously expressed willingness to seek the “proper consent” of the suppliers before providing the information to the Group and reiterated that it did not source any “undocumented gold” from DRC.

    AGR also stated that Alphonse Katarebe would succeed Alain Goetz as CEO.

    But insiders told this investigative website that Alphonse, as he is fondly known, was a mere proxy of Goetz.

    “Goetz’s alleged departure is just a smokescreen because Alphonse acts on his orders,” said the source.

    In the report to the Security Council , experts noted “with concern the lack of cooperation from the two companies and believes that such a lack impedes its ability to conduct a comprehensive analysis on the compliance by the two companies with the Group’s guidelines on due diligence.”

    Several sources, including mining officials, researchers and Kampala -based gold traders, told investigators that Kampala was a recipient of smuggled gold from DRC.

    In addition, the Group found that Ugandan authorities lacked a coherent policy to combat smuggling.

    The Group also found that Kampala-based gold exporters did not have an efficient system to avoid the contamination of their supply chains with illegally traded gold from the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

    It also was observed that in Uganda, the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region certificate is not yet compulsory, explaining the reason they did not request those certificates from suppliers from DRC.

    UN experts also noted that the authorities of Uganda have failed to share the results of their investigations into Kampala-based gold traders.

    On 1 November 2018, the Group sent a request for information to the Government of Uganda to which it responded that while they were willing to cooperate and work closely with the Group, they had concerns about the short notice of one week to provide the information.

    Free Uganda

    On July 19, 2010, Mahmoud Barwani and Mohammed Yoosuf, all known to embattled Ugandan businessman, Sudhir Ruparelia, decided to open a company in Kampala.

    The company was named Infinity Investments Ltd. The duo would be directors in their new outfit.

    Four days after opening the company, (July 23 2010), the two directors drove to Crane Bank where they applied for credit facilities in the form Direct Loans ($2.5m, Shs 5.8bn) and Over Draft (OD) Shs 1bn.

    The proposal to the bank’s loan committee for sanction was made on August 14, 2010.

    The securities offered against these facilities were Plot M589, Mukabya Road, Plot 1-5, Cornwall Crescent, Plot 45-65, Mpanga Close, Plot M539, Mpanga Close, Plot 880, Industrial Area and Plot M876, Industrial Area.

    According to confidential records of Crane Bank contained in an updated and detailed forensic audit report sent to Bank of Uganda, search reports for plots M876 & M880 were received on August 13, 2010.

    A day later, a sanction letter was issued (August 14, 2010).

    On September 30, 2010, the massive loans were disbursed to Mahmoud Barwani and Mohammed Yoosuf.

    Lawyer’s warning

    Yet, earlier in 2007, lawyer Kiwanuka, Karugire Advocates and Solicitors to Crane Bank had clearly pointed out that Plot 1-5, Cornwall Crescent and Plot M589, Mukabya Road were encumbered by wayleaves such as high power transmission lines that traversed the properties.

    Basing on the lawyers’ report, the remaining securities tendered by Infinity’s directors, were not sufficient to cover the bank’s exposure.

    Despite this knowledge, Crane Bank accepted these plots as securities.

    The credit policy defines bank lending as purpose-based and not-security based. Security is meant to cushion to fall backing face of adversity.

    However, Crane Bank continued to advance facilities to Infinity despite clear indications that there was no business in place to warrant the facilities.

    Interestingly, when the loans were disbursed, cheques for Shs 6.1bn and $2.68m were drawn in the name of Mahmud Barwani and money deposited on his personal account.

    Auditors discovered that Infinity Company had not provided a registered office location at the time of registration and the company secretary at the time was Valentine Ajay, a personal secretary of Sudhir Ruparelia.

    The company was never registered for tax hence did not pay tax or file annual returns until 2014.

    By setting up an overdraft position which allowed it to put in place standing orders to repay loans’ principal interest from its current accounts, Infinity created an illusion that the loans were performing despite there being very little net cash flow from outside.

    On April 1, 2011, the limit for OD increased from Shs 1bn to Shs 2.5bn.

    Six months later, Infinity’s credit facilities were renewed and a withdrawal of Shs 1.4bn via cheque number six was made and funds ended up in Barwani’s personal account.

    Property Released

    There was a dramatic turn in May 2012 when Crane Bank released the securities and in turn reduced the Shilling OD limit from Shs 2.5bn to Shs 0.7bn. At the time, Infinity was Shs 147m above the new limit.

    Auditors said this “left Crane Bank at a weaker position as security coverage dropped to 67 percent.”

    On November 2, 2012, the credit facilities were renewed (direct loans $2.42m, Shs 5.61bn and OD Shs 0.75bn) despite arrears of Shs 415m and $66,000 in accounts.

    Thereafter, it appears a bailout was given to the company to normalize its accounts.

    On November 11, 2012, $86,890 and $126,122 was transferred from Infinity’s USD current account to Shillings loan account to clear arrears in these accounts.

    Auditors discovered that the “funds for the transfer had come from a cash deposit of Shs 200,000 by Mohamed Ali and a transfer of $200,000 from Meera Investments Limited.”

    Mohamed Ali was a director Premier Commodities and a very close associate of Sudhir Ruparelia.

    Indeed, on January 6, 2014, Infinity’s credit facilities worth Shs 12bn were renewed.

    Lack of registration details

    In April 2014, Oundo & Co Advocates told Crane Bank that Infinity’s mortgage charges could not be registered because documents for several plots were “missing at the files registry.”

    A month later, MMAKS Advocates informed Crane Bank that Infinity had never filed annual returns and hence debenture and board resolutions could not be registered.

    Investigators observed that it was not a surprise when Crane Bank, 11 months after renewing Infinity’s credit facilities amid mysterious circumstances, requested for payment of facilities advanced to infinity.

    “As at then,” said PwC auditors, “Crane Bank’s exposure with Infinity stood at Shs 8.148bn and $3.56m.”

    Eventually, the audit report indicated, on December 12, 2014, “Crane Bank wrote off 3.5m and Shs 8.2b advanced to Infinity, making up 20 percent of all write-offs to date.”

    The revelations underscore how Crane Bank’s failure to adhere to its credit policy and banking rules led to an accumulation of non-performing loans and erosion of capital before grappling with a liquidity crisis.

    As at June 2016, Crane bank’s non-performing loans stood at 14.5 per cent, nearly twice the market average of 8.3 per cent.

    The auditor’s fresh finding appear to counter Crane Bank’s claim that its liquidity challenges were caused by a poor economy that suffocated many of its borrowers who failed to service their loans.

    Auditors used the example of Infinity to show a long standing pattern of Crane Bank’s dubious loan policy that saw newly formed companies advanced large sums of money barely a week after they had been formed.

    Aureco Investments Limited owned by Amina Moghe received billions of shillings eight days after application for a loan.

    Auditors implied that Crane Bank’s problems were compounded by advancing loans to companies “even though it should have been clear that there was no business of any kind being conducted by the companies in question.”

    For Infinity, Crane Bank wavered the requirement that applicants should have banked with it for 6 months or provide statements from other banks before advances are made to them.

    “The same is true for loans to Minutan and Aureco which were justified on the basis of the property held by the promoters,” the audit report reads in part.

    Legally, experts advised that borrowers and Crane Bank officers should be “investigated for the charges of embezzlement and conspiracy to defraud under the Anti-corruption Act and the Penal code respectively.”

    In the case of Sudhir who owned the bank, the audit report recommended that he should face charges of conspiracy to defraud; making false or misleading statements; embezzlement; causing financial loss; receiving stolen property; influence peddling and nepotism among others.

    Free Uganda

    Kyadondo East MP Robert Kyagulanyi, alias Bobi Wine, has been invited to a session of the UK parliament which will be discussing the declining state of democracy in Uganda tomorrow.
    Mr Kyagulanyi’s political aide, Mr Nicodemus Musoke, confirmed the travel to the UK.The Commons website has indicated ‘Democracy in Uganda’ as one of the key issues for debate in the House of Commons tomorrow at 1630 British time. The debate will be streamed live via
    “We will be debating democracy in Uganda. I will be leading the debate and the minister for Africa will be responding,” UK Member of Parliament for Stockton South Paul Williams told Daily Monitor in a telephone interview from UK last Friday.
    “I want to see a strong and prosperous, independent Uganda with strong democratic institutions. I am interested in the future of Uganda. In Bobi Wine, I see a person who has a good understanding of poverty, inequality and (he) has a good vision for the future,” Dr Williams said, but added that as a non-Ugandan, it is not him to guide Ugandans to choose the leader they want.
    Dr Williams first moved the motion early last month but it did not attract much support.
    However, it has since garnered support of 20 other MPs– seven from the Scottish National Party, eight from Labour Party, three independents, one Conservative, and one from Democratic Unionist Party.
    The MPs want UK Prime Minister Theresa May to use her government and other international actors such as the European Union, United Nations and Commonwealth—the umbrella of former British colonies—to promote democracy in Uganda.
    Bobi’s UK schedule
    Mr Godfrey Ssekisonge and Ms Belinda Atim, who are coordinating Mr Kyagulanyi’s travel, said the Ugandan legislator will have a series of events in the UK beginning with the House of Commons, addressing guests at Oxford Union and Oxford University.
    “He will also have his private activities after a series of official events,” Mr Ssekisonge said.
    Mr Musoke said after the UK, Mr Kyagulanyi will tour the US before holding a music performance in Kingston, Jamaica.

    Bobi Wine has faced confrontations with the State on several occasions with some violent incidents.
    Police have blocked his music concerts on a number of occasions and banned him from addressing public gatherings.
    Last year, his driver was shot dead in the violence that erupted during the Arua Municipality parliamentary by-elections. He and about five other Opposition MPs are currently charged with treason.
    Dr Williams has recently been vocal on undemocratic tendencies in Uganda.
    He described himself as a supporter and friend of Uganda who, for years, worked for an NGO in western Uganda’s town of Kinkizi before returning home to become an MP in 2017.
    Key issues
    Dr Williams said in tomorrow’s debate, he will highlight and push the UK parliament to have a chance to discuss the importance of true democracy in Uganda, the undermining of public institutions and charting ways to support Ugandans to strengthen their democracy. “UK has a legitimate interest as a friend and partner, we see attacks on politicians, we see the military moving to arrest and torture democratically elected politicians- that is something many countries around the world are concerned about,” Dr Williams said.
    He said UK’s strong relations with Uganda will have to continue but that the current actions of the presidency are ‘diminishing’ the country’s standing globally.
    “What we want to see is a strong Uganda but what we see at the moment is a strong President who is retaining power for himself, reducing the power of the people. We want a strong democracy, but I am not endorsing one person or the other,” Dr Williams said.
    However, President Museveni’s press secretary Don Wanyama dismissed Dr Williams’ assertions and referred to him as a “victim of acute ignorance on Uganda and its history.”
    “Anyone who argues that Uganda’s democracy is not working doesn’t know where we are coming from. There was a time when elections were never the reflection of the will of people. President Museveni has been democratically elected over years,” Mr Wanyama said.
    “We challenge Williams and his Opposition friends in Uganda [to show] where democracy has been abused. He is obviously ignorant, a biased fellow working for lobby groups. He needs to know that the destiny and future of Uganda is a question for Ugandans,” he added.
    Dr Williams reiterated: “But my critique is that the President is protecting his power while undermining the institutions of democracy – the Electoral Commission, Parliament, the Judiciary and somewhere he is undermining the free press as well — making it very difficult…. As a friend of Uganda, I would like to see strong institutions instead of a strong President.”
    He said the UK is an important partner to Uganda with a vital role to play in business, development and security.
    “It is very important to be critical when you see something. Right now, the UK government is keeping its criticism in private,” Dr Williams said but added that if the attacks on democracy continue to prevail in Uganda, the UK may have to make its criticism public.
    He criticised what he called military operations against Ugandans intended to keep people in power and said Ugandans should be supported to take their opportunities.
    “We all know in every village, there is infrastructure not to protect the country but the future of the president and his party. They control the Electoral Commission, Judiciary, undermining all the aspects of democracy,” Dr Williams added.
    He said although he has previously spoken to Mr Kyagulanyi, the pair have not met.
    “I see an inspiring potential leader with many strong leadership qualities. I want to help him in his learning journey, develop his skills in leadership. It is fantastic that he has a passion to get people out of poverty,” Dr Williams said.

    The Minister of Information, Mr Frank Tumwebaze, described the debate by the UK legislators as political interference and told them to focus on “their own worrying issues of BREXIT and many others than engaging in internal issues of Uganda.”
    “Uganda’s democracy is not discussed and debated in London. That can’t be democracy but rather an abuse of real democracy…We got enough of their imported democracy before 1962 and it was up to no good,” Mr Tumwebaze said.
    Dr Williams said he “respects and totally believes” in Uganda’s national sovereignty, and his actions should not be construed as neo-colonialism or anything similar.
    In December 2017, Parliament amended the Constitution to remove the presidential age limit clause which barred him or anyone aged above 75 from contesting for presidency. With the amendment, Mr Museveni can now stand for re-election until death.

    Dr Williams described Uganda as a “fantastic country which deserves better.”
    “…I’m concerned about the slow gradual decline of the democratic processes in Uganda and I think my country has a legitimate interest in Uganda because we are partners in the Commonwealth, in business, in development,” he added.
    Dr Williams raised a similar matter in the House of Commons in August last year when Mr Museveni was in London for the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (Chogm) but it did not gain much traction.
    He said the President had become a barrier to Uganda’s development and good governance”, which comments triggered a social media storm with a section of Ugandans lambasting him for still treating Uganda as a British colony while others supported him.
    Envoy’s response
    Uganda’s High Commissioner to UK Julius Peter Moto told the media that he had not been officially informed about tomorrow’s debate.
    “We will respond when they give us a chance, but they ought to know that Uganda is a young democracy; we are on track: we are learning: and our economy is picking up,” Mr Moto said.
    On January 26, Mr Museveni, now aged 74, will mark 33 years in power. He ranks fourth on list of Africa’s longest serving presidents after Equatorial Guinea’s Teodoro Obiang Nguema (39 years), Cameroon’s Paul Biya (36 years) and Congo-Brazzaville’s Denis Sassou Nguesso (34 years).

    in reply to: Increased shootings by cadet police officers in Uganda #204572
    Free Uganda

    Yoweri Museveni

    The opposition, generally speaking, is a government in waiting. And true to that, in democratic societies, tables often turn with the opposition taking over power and those in power becoming the opposition.

    The regularity with which the power table swings from opposition to ruling party and from ruling party to the opposition is usually an indicator of the health of a county’s democracy, and how much power citizens have in choosing those they deem qualified to manage public affairs on their behalf.

    Equitable access to civic spaces by the ruling party, those in the centre, and the opposition is sacred in a functioning democracy. However, in Uganda this space is alarmingly shrinking and becoming a monopoly of the ruling NRM party.

    Denying spaces for the opposition and critics of the NRM is now an established part of the power retention strategy for Museveni and his life- presidency project. Some mistake this act of opportunism for tactical astuteness on the part of Museveni. Nothing can be further from the truth.  Bluntly put, this primitive hogging of power has a counterproductive effect on Uganda’s transitions to democracy.

    Already, Uganda is a black sheep in the original East African region—we are the only country that hasn’t had a peaceful transition from one president to another.

    If the Democratic Republic of the Congo manages to pull off a peaceful transition from President Joseph Kabila to another leader, despite its flawed electoral process, the blackness of Uganda will cast a dark shadow beyond East Africa.

    Increasingly, it is no longer even ‘‘news’’ when members of the opposition are blocked from holding meetings, rallies, prayers, and music concerts, as is the case with singer and Member of parliament, Robert Kyagulanyi better known by his stage name—Bobi Wine.

    It is near- becoming acceptable in the eyes of Ugandans that the NRM and President Museveni can have as much access to the electorate using public resources while the opposition remains largely chained on poles planted by the police and military. That is how tragic it has got; normalization of the abnormal.

    If you ask, who benefits from this cloudy and unbalanced sad situation in which the opposition appears free but when in real sense is chained? Certainly not Ugandans.

    The sole beneficiary of this situation is Museveni. But this comes at the cost of continuous psychological torture of Ugandans who are unsure of what will happen to the country without him.

    By gluing his raw life-presidency aspirations to Uganda’s future, and fattening his ego by claiming to have grandeur ambitions that go beyond Uganda’s border, Museveni has become more opportunistic than nationalistic.

    The limitation of civic space for Ugandans has dire consequences for Uganda, including but not limited to stunting the growth of state institutions critical for the growth and inculcation of a democratic culture. It also undermines the growth of new emerging talent in both the opposition and ruling party—talent that could offer Uganda solutions to challenges Museveni has failed to address in the last 33 years.

    Equitable access to spaces in which the opposition and the NRM must coexist to sell their agenda to the public for the benefit of Ugandans is not debatable. If the opposition is perpetually stopped from accessing the electorate, it means,

    Ugandans are being denied an opportunity for the sprouting of new political talent to widen leadership choices for citizens.

    Unfortunately, this is what we are faced with. The consequence has been that Ugandans have been disempowered, making citizens weaker in the demand for accountable leadership. This weakness of the citizenry is best illustrated by the now infamous begging phrase: Tusaba Govementi etuyambe ‘‘We ask government to help us.’’

    By Betty Aol Ocan

    The writer is Gulu woman MP & Leader of Opposition

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