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Time has come to arrest the corrupt, says Museveni

By Vision Reporter

Added 18th February 2009 03:00 AM

TIME for scaring and cautioning corrupt officials is over, President Yoweri Museveni has declared.

TIME for scaring and cautioning corrupt officials is over, President Yoweri Museveni has declared.

By Frank Mugabi and Richard Adrama

TIME for scaring and cautioning corrupt officials is over, President Yoweri Museveni has declared.

Speaking to members of the Arua business community at Arua Presidential Lodge on Tuesday, the President said all officials implicated in corruption would be arrested and prosecuted in the courts of law.

“I have been reliably informed of rampant misuse of funds meant for the National Agricultural Advisory Services (NAADS), the Northern Uganda Social Action Fund (NUSAF), and the Universal Primary Education (UPE) in this district. When people are given money to construct a classroom block, they build something else,” Museveni noted.

“We now need to capture them wholesale, not just to scare or sack. This is one of the surest ways we shall succeed in fighting corruption.”

He tasked the resident district commissioner, Ibrahim Abiriga, and the district chairman, Richard Andama Ferua, to write a report on corruption and send it to him.

Museveni was responding to an appeal by the business community representative, Agatre Alpha, to retain the transport state minister Simon Ejua and the Arua RDC in office so that they could carry forward the fight against corruption.

Agatre, who drew a thunderous applause from his colleagues, noted that the two played a key role in the anti-corruption campaign.

On January 25, the President penned a stern warning to the corrupt that was published in the media.

In the article, he cautioned all potential investors and businessmen not to entertain demands for bribes by “some of the rotten thieves who answer to the description of leaders or officials in the Government of Uganda.”

“I have been reliably informed that like dung flies, these thieves flock to wherever there is food and contaminate it. Like the dung flies, they flock wherever there is food or filth. These parasites apparently pester foreign investors for gifts, assistance of one kind or other, including cash,” Museveni wrote.

“This contemptible behaviour is not only for these characters’ selfish interests, but it is to the detriment of Uganda and Africa. It makes foreigners wary of investing here,” the President wrote. “It raises their transaction costs on account of having to incorporate bribes into their expenditure. A number of projects have, apparently, been frustrated because of these parasites,”

In a memorandum, the Arua community petitioned the President to expand the water supply system in the town, saying the existing distribution lines were meant to serve only 1,000 users, but the population had grown by 400%.

They also appealed to the Government to compensate them for the property and lives that were lost in the LRA ambushes on the Karuma -Pakwach road.

The President said plans were underway to upgrade Arua airstrip to an international airport.

He said work on the runway would take off immediately after a similar project in Kassese airfield is complete.

Time has come to arrest the corrupt, says Museveni

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