Forum for Democratic Change received sh18m from the NIMD to enhance its communication protocol
The Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) has run into trouble with one of its principle donors after its secretariat submitted accountability for sh18m replete with a slew of forgeries.
In a letter written to FDC Secretary General and former Leader of Opposition in the Ninth Parliament, Nandala Mafabi, the country representative for the Netherlands Institute for Multiparty Democracy (NIMD), Frank Rusa gave the party a one-week ultimatum to rectify the forgeries he euphemistically labelled as "anomalies."
"The letter seeks to put the above concern to your attention and ask of you to take the appropriate actions to rectify these anomalies not later than a week," Rusa notes in a letter dated 25th June.
Rusa notes that FDC received sh18m from the NIMD to enhance its communication protocol.
To do so, Rusa noted, FDC planned to procure communication paraphernalia like Sony camera, Samsung Galaxy Tablet, Banners, Broadcast Led Lights, podium and backdrop banners.
Contrary to the party's guidelines that make it explicit that procurements should be premised on competitive bidding by comparing a minimum of three quotations, the purchase of the said items was single-sourced.
However, to NIMD's consternation, according to Rusa, FDC submitted inflated figures for a host of items while for others, old articles disguised as brand new were procured in a well-crafted scheme by party officials to line their pockets.
Among the item whose cost was grossly inflated, according to Rusa, is the Sony Camera. The average price of a camera, NIMD contends, is between sh3m and sh4m.
However, the Sony camera bought by FDC was at sh5.94m which is almost sh2m more than the average market price.
For the laptop, Rusa notes, the ingenious party official bought second-hand computers and accessories but labelled them as brand new.
The accountability submitted by FDC secretariat indicated that the party purchased computers from the same supplier who sold them the Samsung Tablet.
Ironically, and much to the party's embarrassment, NIMD made calls and proved that the purported supplier of the Samsung Tablet, computers and attendant accessories deals in different items.
NIMD contends that the forged receipts invalidate the whole accountability.
"The accountability lacks proper supporting documents and authenticity such as the lack of a bid analysis for Walugembe and sons, the delivery notes for the camera and laptop, delivery note for the MiFi, lack of receipt for transport among others," Rusa noted.
FDC also went ahead and purchased a podium in contravention of the donor financial guidelines.
When contacted, FDC president, Patrick Amuriat Oboi conceded that he was in receipt of Rusa's letter.
"We are in the process of carrying out administrative action to ensure that we respond to demands of NIMD," a guarded Oboi said, referring New Vision to Nandala for finer details of the party's response.
When contacted, Mafabi said he had not yet received the letter but angrily demanded to know who had leaked it to the press.
"Who gave you the letter? Where did you get it, you ask the person who gave it to you. Are they (NIMD) the ones who gave it to the press? I don't have it, I have not received it," Mafabi said before switching off the phone.
For a party that prides itself in being at the centre stage of ending what its top echelon describes as corrosive corruption in the ruling government, submitting forged accountability for niggardly sh18m must be a cause for soul searching.