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Ugannda Opposition MPs reject Shs20m ‘bribe’

Discussion in 'International Forum' started by ByaseL, Jan 20, 2011.

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    ByaseL JF-Expert Member

    Jan 20, 2011
    Joined: Nov 22, 2007
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    A handful of MPs yesterday rejected Shs20 million worth of taxpayers’ money wired to their personal bank accounts by the government two months to the end of their tenure in the 8th Parliament.

    The money, coming 28 days to the elections, has been described as a “bribe” by opposition lawmakers, who vowed to return it to the Consolidated Fund. Others led by House Public Accounts Committee Chairman Nandala Mafabi said they would use it as evidence to sue the government.

    “This is blood money, it’s a scandal of the year” Mr Mafabi said. “This is part of the Shs602 billion NRM MPs passed in the supplementary budget. They want to use Shs1.2 billion for 60 opposition MPs and bribe NRM MPs with Shs5.3 billion. We are taking the government to court since we now have evidence to pin President Museveni on bribery.”

    “These people are shameless. They think they can trick us. The role of MPs is not to monitor government programmes; it’s entirely oversight. How many hospitals are these? How many drugs can be bought using Shs6.5 billion? How about the 320 women and children who die of malaria everyday? ”

    The government on January 15 wired Shs6.5 billion to 326 MPs. According to payment vouchers Daily Monitor saw, the money was paid to “monitor government programmes.”

    Finance Minister Syda Bbumba yesterday said it was given in “good faith”. “We paid this money to MPs across the board purposely to do their work and there is nothing unique or stealthy about this money.”

    A day after the ruling party forced through a controversial supplementary budget of Shs602 billion, it emerged on January 5 that all NRM parliamentary flag bearers were to pocket Shs20million each. The 238 directly-elected aspirants shared Shs4.7b while the 112 district Women aspirants got Shs2.8b.

    Lwemiyaga MP Theodore Ssekikubo (NRM) who in 2004 exposed the Shs5m “bribe” given to MPs during the scrapping of presidential term limits said: “The timing of the Shs20m is suspicious. They can take their money. In any case, there is no time to do the monitoring.”