TOP
Wednesday,December 02,2020 22:39 PM

NSSF probe MPs clash over report

By Vision Reporter

Added 21st October 2008 03:00 AM

DISSENTING MPs on the NSSF probe committee yesterday clashed with their chairman, Johnson Malinga, and his deputy, Abdul Katuntu, both FDC, with each group accusing the other of being dishonest.

DISSENTING MPs on the NSSF probe committee yesterday clashed with their chairman, Johnson Malinga, and his deputy, Abdul Katuntu, both FDC, with each group accusing the other of being dishonest.

By Mary Karugaba
and Madinah Tebajjukira


DISSENTING MPs on the NSSF probe committee yesterday clashed with their chairman, Johnson Malinga, and his deputy, Abdul Katuntu, both FDC, with each group accusing the other of being dishonest.

The dissenting group, led by the NRM whip, Stephen Tashobya, accused Malinga and his deputy of trying to manipulate the content of the main report to suit their interests.

Trouble started when Malinga called a meeting to brief the members on the progress of the probe report, which was to be handed to the Speaker of Parliament Edward Ssekandi today.

Instead, Malinga told the members, he had met the deputy speaker, Rebecca Kadaga, who advised him to wait for the dissenting MPs to write their minority report which would be attached to the main report. She gave the minority group up to Friday to hand over their report.

“As you are aware, our report is ready but the deputy speaker has advised that we give them the minutes and all the verbatim to be able to write their report,” Malinga said in a meeting where the press was invited.

But Tashobya cut him short, saying according to him, the final report was not yet ready as they had been called to discuss the final draft.

“When we left Entebbe, we agreed that we would meet on Monday to finalize the report. The letter sent by the committee clerk invited us to discuss the final report, not for you to brief us on your meeting with the deputy speaker,” an angry Tashobya said.
He then requested the chairman to avail them with the final report so they could write their minority report.

Out of the 20 members on the committee, six have rejected the findings and are writing their own report.
The main report allegedly accuses the NRM Secretary General Amama Mbabazi and finance minister Ezra Suruma of conflict of interest and influence peddling in the Temangalo land deal with NSSF.

The dissidents argue that the findings are based on only one testimony, that of NSSF managing director David Jamwa when he appeared before the committee the last time, where he claimed he had been pressurized into the deal by Suruma, and did not mention his first appearances, where he and the Board denied any political pressure.
Perez Ahabwe, one of the dissenting members, proposed that the report be reviewed to include the parts that were left out.

“There is still evidence that needs to be included. Let us revisit the report and include all those issues to avoid doubt that the committee is sitting on some of the evidence,” he suggested.

But Malinga rejected the proposal, saying by the time they left Entebbe, all issues had been concluded and those who agreed pended their signatures.
“We shall not give you our report. You disagreed with us. Asking us for our report is totally unacceptable,” Katuntu sneered.

“We can only give you the minutes and the verbatim to help you but we cannot give you the whole report.”

But before he could finish, Ahabwe shot back: “This is a statement of utmost dishonesty. We agreed that we would meet on Monday and finalise the report. So if you are working backward, that is a sign of dishonesty and manipulation.”
He accused the chairman and his deputy of turning the meeting into a press conference.

“Why are you scared to give us the report? I am now suspicious. If things are like this, I am sorry, I am out,” he said as he stormed out of the committee.
“I think this is pressure. They are the ones who are being dishonest,” Malinga responded before the meeting ended abruptly.

Immediately after the meeting, Ahabwe and Tashobya, joined by the Government Chief Whip, Kabakumba Masiko, went to complain to the Speaker that they had not been given a copy of the report.

“Disagreeing on some issues in the report does not mean that they cease to be members of the committee”, the Speaker ruled.

“Besides, they don’t dissent to the entire report. Though they didn’t append their signatures, they are entitled to have the report.” He pointed out that the report would help them compare notes.

Malinga later told The New Vision that the Speaker had called him and ordered that the members be given a copy of the report.

“We didn’t want to give them a report because we wanted to protect it from the public. It is now going to leak,” Malinga said.

Sources said the committee eventually resolved to submit a copy of the report to the Speaker, who will then hand it over to the dissenting MPs.

In another development, Independent MP Tress Buchanayani yesterday said he had written his own minority report, bringing the total number of reports on the Temangalo land probe to three.
He argued that he disagreed with the main report and some of the issues raised by the dissenting MPs but declined to give details.

NSSF probe MPs clash over report

Related articles

More From The Author

More From The Author