Head of PAC Vows to Recover Split Billions in Oil Case ‘Graft’

Hon. Gerald Karuhanga the Chairperson of the Parliamentary Public Accounts Committee

Reacting to the contentious URA Ugsh 6billion oil cash dish out among top government officials, there the Vice Chairperson of the Public Accounts Committee in Parliament Hon. Gerald Karuhanga has commented bitterly saying the beneficiaries must return the money to the treasury.

He said the move was ‘wrong’, ‘immoral’ and ‘illegal’ adding that it could set a very bad precedent to other civil servants and all Ugandans.

“We are very clear and we are going to challenge it in Parliament.  It is probably going to be our first business next week. We are preparing a non-partisan motion because we can’t sit down and watch, ” Karuhanga who is also the Ntungamo Municipality MP said in a televised talk show on Thursday night.

He strongly criticized the impunity of those who abuse public resources which in this case he said was done in contravention of the Appropriation Act, Public Finance Management Act and the constitution itself.

“The appropriation powers according to our constitution are a preserve of Parliament. And for anyone to attempt to conduce themselves or galvanize some power and think they are Parliament is completely unacceptable,” he added.

Ramathan Ggoobi, an economist and lecturer at Makerere University Business School wondered why public servants who swore to offer a service to the country would begin to ‘rent seek’ from the President.

“This scandal comes at a critical point when Uganda is looking to begin producing oil. We expect the government to have been cautious when it comes to thriftily spending oil resources especially looking at how this has affected other oil producers,” Ggoobi said.

While he admitted that bonuses are an international practice, Ggobi questioned the criterion undertaken by the President to arrive at who is rewarded by how much.

He proposed that the 42 beneficiaries of this ‘Presidential golden handshake’ return the money on top of apologizing to the citizenry.

Since this website broke revelations on this highly syndicated transaction earlier this week, majority of the public domain has raised questions criticizing government’s priorities.

Many wonder why amid poor service delivery in key sectors like health and education, the executive would find it appropriate to divide billions of money to some of the top paid civil servants in this country.


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