Handshake Scandal: “I was Paid Shs 30m Bonus for Photocopying”

URA officials appearing before COSASE today. (Photo by Maurice Ochol)

Members of Parliament this morning heard that some of the Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) officials who benefited from the Shs 6billion shillings Presidential Handshake did not do any extraordinary work to deserve their share.

The Committee on Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises today met with another group of URA officials who were quizzed on their exact participation in the tax arbitration cases in which Uganda won over $700million in tax arrears from Oil companies Tullow and Heritage.

One of the officials Joseph Angulla when tasked to explain his contributions in the cases, health he admitted that the work he did for the case which involved mainly filing documents, stomach was no different from his usual job description.

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Mr. Angulla who at the time of the cases was serving at URA’s Clerical officer and the custodian of all the documents regarding the oil case was paid Shs 29million in the handshake deal. His normal monthly salary from URA he said was Shs 2.3million.

“I don’t want to insinuate that I was under duress while working on oil case, I but only worked diligently,” he said.

He also pointed out that he never travelled to the International Court of Arbitration in London.

Meanwhile the committee members were astounded by another URA official Paul Ojambo who said he shared Shs 29.5million shillings of the bonuses, just for photocopying documents for the case.

Asked by the committee Chairman Hon Abdu Katuntu on what extraordinary work he did for the case, Ojambo said he used to photocopy documents and work extra hours (beyond 5pm.)

His work he said mainly entailed serving documents, and keeping documents confidentially.

But when pressed on whether he had ever worked late at URA before the oil tax case, he responded in the affirmative, and also confirmed that he had never been paid extra for working late.

Another official Remmy Golooba who was working as a URA lawyer and was paid 133million shillings told the MPs that he didn’t think he deserved that much.

He told the MPs, “Not all rewards merit. I may not have deserved it.”

The committee chair Katuntu adjourned the meeting to Friday this week where officials from the Ministry of Energy are expected.


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