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Odele to begin defence in sh1.5b fraud case

By Edward Anyoli

Added 9th November 2016 03:31 PM

Prosecution said Patrick Odele with intent to fraud forged several cheques

Prosecution said Patrick Odele with intent to fraud forged several cheques

Court has ordered the former finance manager of African Centre for Global Health and Social Transformation (ACHEST) accused of embezzling sh1.5b, to explain the loss.

Justice Margaret Tibulya of the Anti-Corruption Court in Kololo, directed that Patrick Odele must explain the loss of sh1.5b. He was ordered to start his defence on November 29.

Tibulya said upon reviewing all the evidence adduced by prosecution, a prima facie case has been established by the prosecution against Odele.

Odele was charged with 103 different offences in which billion of shillings were stolen from the organisation.

He has been on remand in Luzira Prison since March 24, 2013 after court declined to grant him bail over charges of embezzlement, forgery and uttering false document. He denied the charges.

Prosecution led by senior state attorney Josephine Namatovu from the Directorate of Public Prosecution (DPP) said Odele between May 2009 and August 2011 at Bank of Baroda being employed by African Centre for Global Health and Social Transformation (ACHEST) as finance manager received money and never remitted Pay as You Earn to Uganda Revenue which he had access to by virtue of his employment

Odele is also alleged to have stolen money which prosecution said he fraudulently withdrew from the ACHEST account in Bank of Baroda and failed to remit as National Social Security Fund (NSSF) as required.

Prosecution said Odele with intent to fraud forged several cheques claiming to have been signed by Prof. Francis Omaswa authorising the withdrawal.

However, Prof. Omaswa, the executive director of (ACHEST) who testified as the first prosecution witness denied authorising such cheques.

Odele is also accused of uttering false cheques to Bank of Baroda purporting that it was authorised by Prof Omaswa and withdrew money.

Prosecution  said  Odele withdrew the cash amounting over sh1,527,940,933 on different dates  and gave  the impression that the  money had  been remitted to Uganda Revenue Authority and National Social  Security Fund, but investigations later revealed  that the money withdrawn between May 2009 and August 2011 was not remitted.

The African Centre for Global Health and Social Transformation (ACHEST) is a civil society organization based in Uganda that was created by African leaders in health and development. It advocates for the use of evidence to strengthen the capacity of health.

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