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IGG cautions Magyezi against interference

Magyezi at the center of controversy.

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The Inspectorate of Government-IG has cautioned the Local Government Minister, Rafael Magyezi against interfering with its mandate. This stems from Magyezi’s attempts to stop the interdiction of the Fort Portal city town clerk, Moses Otimong as part of the ongoing investigations into his alleged abuse of power and mismanagement of public resources.

On October 27th, 2022, the Inspectorate of Government wrote to the permanent secretary of the local government directing the immediate interdiction of Otimong after establishing that he had a case to answer resulting from the accusations levied against him. The Local Government Minister, Rafael Magyezi wrote back on November 1, 2022, saying that indicting the town clerk would cause a gap in service delivery.

He also noted that the permanent secretary had notified his office about the process of transferring the town clerk to a different destination, which would prevent him from interfering with the ongoing investigations. Magyezi listed five reasons that require the town clerk to remain in office for at least two weeks before his transfer to the next workstation.

He cited the ongoing assessment of the USMID project, which requires a substantive officer, payment of pensions and gratuity, an area that is very key and sensitive and requires the town clerk’s authorization and compilation of information on SACCOs for the parish development model among others, which he maintained could not be delegated.

“In view of this, we have shared with the permanent secretary that this decision stays as we wait for the report of the investigation. This is to ensure that there is no gap left in service delivery, therefore, I appeal to you to use your discretion and let the town clerk do a smooth handover as he has already been transferred to the next station and if the report comes out pinpointing the officer, we shall support and expedite the appropriate action to be taken against him,” reads the Minister’s letter partly.

However, the IG will not have any of this and insists the town clerk must leave the office. In her November 3rd letter addressed to the minister, Anne Muhairwe, the Deputy Inspector General of Government, says that Otimong must vacate office within seven days.  She also cautions the Minister against continued interference in the mandate of the IG.

“We note that this is not the first incident in which your conduct could be perceived as an obstruction of the IG in the execution of its mandate to which we take exception. Be advised that hindering or obstruction of any person acting in the exercise of powers conferred by the office of the IG is an offense and thus punishable under section 35 (g) of the same act. By copy of this letter, the permanent secretary is further directed to implement the IG decision contained in our letter of 27th October 2022 without any further delays,” the letter reads

Prosper Businge, the Fort portal city councilor and member of the city executive welcomed the decision by the Inspectorate of Government, saying it will save other districts from the transfer of the officer under investigation on serious allegations. She notes that Otimong has already left the office to his deputy Rusoke John Bosco.



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