By Umaru Kashaka
KAMPALA - Former Ugandan Prime Minister Prof Apollo Nsibambi has lashed out at ex-Vice-President Prof Gilbert Bukenya, accusing him of spreading lies about him.
Under the Emoluments and Benefits of the President, Vice-President and Prime Minister Act 2010, both leaders are entitled to pension, a fully furnished house, chauffeur-driven cars, fuel allowance, medical allowance, security guards and cash to cater for utility bills.
In addition, the retirees are entitled to an education allowance for up to four biological children, in accordance with articles 106, 108 and 108A of the Constitution.
However Bukenya has recently been in the news, repeatedly accusing the Government of selectively paying other former leaders and leaving him out.
Whereas he did not mention names in his recent outburst, in an earlier interview in April, he categorically said the Government was selectively paying the former prime minister.
He said: “Is this a punishment? How come all the others got vehicles? The current VP got a vehicle from Parliament (as a former speaker), the former prime minister got a vehicle and his emoluments and I hear he is now a presidential advisor.”
Bukenya has come out to say he does not need government's money
But in a phone interview with the Sunday Vision, Nsibambi denied receiving any special treatment. He said since retiring in May 2011, he had been receiving other benefits, but the car and house purchase fund are yet to come.
“Sometime ago, Bukenya said there are ebyaana n’abaana (children and bastards) in NRM and that I had received all my entitlements. I was annoyed because as someone I worked very well with, he should have consulted me first before telling lies in the media,” he vented his anger.
He explained that the only vehicle he has is the Land Cruiser he borrowed from the Prime Minister’s Office upon leaving office and the Government is footing its fuel costs.
“It is also not true that I have been receiving sh240m for housing as alleged by Bukenya. Whenever I request for this money from public service ministry, they tell me there is no money.”
The former PM said he would not put pressure on Government.
“I am aware of the financial constraints and hope one day I will get all my entitlements. I am grateful to the Government and to God for these retirement benefits because my predecessors did not get them.”
Nsibambi launching the youths strategic plan 2010-2014 in 2010
The public service state minister, Sezi Mbaguta, has on many occasions argued that whereas her ministry wants the past leaders paid, limited resources are hindering the payment process.
The ministry requires about sh11b every year to effect the payment.
Bukenya was recently quoted in the media as having said: “I am also still bitter that they have refused to give me my entitlements as a former vice-president.
“I was in that office for eight years. Okay, I was dismissed, but besides the salary of my staff, and medical allowances, I am surprised that for three years now since my exit, I do not have an official car.”
Reacting to Mbaguta’s comments that so far sh500m has been paid to him, Bukenya told journalists at Parliament this week that he only started receiving about sh4m a year ago, explaining that it is only possible he has received about sh48m.
“If we do not stop lying, this country is going to the devil. I do not want their money, but the Government must speak the truth.
“Was that sh500m paid in cash or to the bank? Which bank was it paid to?”
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