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Kitgum district ranks top for misappropriation of PDM funds

Kitgum RDC William Komakech. File Photo

Kitgum, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Saccos created to benefit from the Parish Development Model-PDM funds in Kitgum are struggling to operate following the alleged misappropriation of funds.

Last week, 15 staff of Kitgum district were arrested over alleged misappropriation of Parish Development Model funds. They were arrested on the orders of the Deputy National Coordinator for PDM, Jovrine Kaliisa, who had visited the district following reports of gross abuse of PDM funds.

During the arrest, the Principal District Commercial Officer, Alex Opira revealed that only 18 of the 72 Saccos that were generated to benefit from the funds received their money.

Parliament appropriated 200 billion Shillings for the new project in the 2021/2022 financial year, out of which Kitgum district was given an Indicative Planning Figure-IPF of 1.2 billion Shillings. However, Kitgum district received only 745 million out of the 1.2 billion Shillings, out of which 526 million shillings was reportedly squandered.

Kaliisa said although a number of districts have mismanaged the PDM funds, Kitgum ranks top on the list of districts abusing the funds.

Kaliisa said Kitgum will not get any additional funds in replacement of the 526 Million Shillings that was embezzled.  She said the officials accused of stealing the money are expected to repay the money by end of the month.

Last month, it was discovered that instead of using 56 million shillings for training as stipulated in the guidelines, the technical staff of Kitgum district used 200 million shillings for the exercise.

The PDM is a strategy initiated for organizing and delivering public and private sector intervention for wealth creation and employment generation at the parish level as the lowest economic planning unit. However, a number of officials in several districts have recently been arrested for using the money to benefit themselves.

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