Following criminal investigations by the Anti-corruption Unit against Bank of Uganda (BoU) in a new theft scandal, the Kyadondo East Member of Parliament Robert Kyagulanyi alias Bobi Wine has described the government of Uganda as a kleptocracy.
The legislator says these (suspects) are the reason for the unending poverty amongst the citizens as he believes the act has happened for so long.
“As the vast majority of Ugandan citizens continue to struggle to even afford a decent meal and as poverty levels continue to rise, Bank of Uganda officials printed 90 billion shillings in excess and took it out of Entebbe airport for their personal use. No one knows for how long this has been going on,” said the influenced MP.
In his description, Bobi Wine said “Kleptocracy is a government with corrupt leaders (kleptocrats) who use their power to exploit the people and natural resources of their own territory in order to extend their personal wealth and political powers. It is rule by a class of thieves. This system involves embezzlement of funds at the expense of the wider population. A kleptocracy is a government ruled by corrupt politicians who use their political power to receive kickbacks, bribes, and special favours at the expense of the population. Kleptocrats may use political leverage to pass laws that enrich them and they usually circumvent the rule of law.”
The musician-turned-politician said president Museveni is not only a dictator but also a kleptocrat, saying that after 33 years in power, Mr. President and his team are stealing money to rest with.
“After 33 years in power, it is now an understatement to call president Museveni’s government a mere dictatorship. It graduated from that stage a long time ago and is now a fully grown kleptocracy. Like it was in Zaire under Mobutu, government officials are stealing with reckless abandon- ‘taamu egenda’ style! Of course they have learnt from the best- the very head of state who treats the national treasury as his personal property! This is the real state of our nation. Oh Uganda, may God uphold thee!”
On Friday 14, the head of the Anti-Corruption Unit at State House Col. Edith Nakalema confirmed a major investigation into the affairs of Bank of Uganda is underway and revealed that Governor Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile blew the whistle.
In a statement, Col. Nakalema also indicated that the investigation initiated by her team was looking into the conduct of a number of senior Central bank officials and those in the customs and Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) in relation to discrepancies in printing and transportation of some billions of Uganda shilling bills.
“The State House Anti-Corruption Unit acting on article 99 (4) of the Constitution of Uganda in liaison with the Criminal Investigations Directorate of Police acting under article 129 (3) a(a) and in conjunction with Bank of Uganda Is carrying out special investigations on a matter pertaining the banks’ procurement and supply chain activities,” Col. Nakalema wrote.
Ofwono Opondo, the government spokesperson said the BoU officials were being questioned on suspicion of “criminal mismanagement” and money laundering.
He said the timing of the operation was deliberately co-ordinated with the arrests on an invitation by the governor “to avoid any possible collusion” between suspects and because a large number of those involved in the scum were present at the bank.
Mr. Opondo said the president after learning about the gravity of the matter authorised Col. Nakalema to raid the bank and bring the culprits to book.
“The president was fully briefed about everything because this is a serious matter,” Mr. Opondo said.