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Two businessmen charged for theft of UGX 32 Billion from Total Uganda

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Two businessmen have been charged by the Anti Corruption Court for theft of fuel belonging to Total Uganda.

The two Deogratius Twagirayezu and Joseph Bbuye were on Thursday arraigned before Anti-Corruption Court Chief Magistrate Pamela Lamunu Ochaya who charged them with two counts of theft and conspiracy to defraud.

According to prosecution, between September 1st 2017 and September 30th 2018 at Total Uganda head office on 8th Street Industrial Area in Kampala, the suspects stole petrol, diesel and lubricants worth 32.2 Billion Shillings.

It is also alleged that Bbuye and Twagirayezu conspired with eight others who included five Total Uganda officials to commit the offences.

The officials who were charged include Moses Sebalu the senior accountant with Total Uganda, Belinda Nakasi-taxation accountant, Priscilla Nansikombi a cashier, Lillian Mboizi Ssanyu- former senior treasury manager, Ritah Daphine Mbabazi– procurement officer.

The others include other dealers with Total Uganda including, Hemal Kotecha, Innocent Tugume and Evelyn Kaggwa.

The prosecution notes that the money was stolen when the officials of Total Uganda connived and posted fictitious payment entries onto the computer network of Total Uganda Limited to portray that 32.2 billion Shillings had been paid by the businessmen into the company’s bank account whereas not.

Bbuye and Twagirayezu denied the charges against them and asked to be released on bail arguing that the charges against them are bailable since their co-accused are also out on bail. They presented three sureties each who included their fellow businessmen and friends.

The State Attorney Jackie Kyasimire didn’t object to their bail application save for asking for the contacts of the sureties whom they had presented for easier purposes of tracing in case they abscond from the trial.

Lamunu asked the accused to deposit with the court 20 million shillings cash, certificate of a land title and their passports. She asked their sureties to execute a non-cash bond of 800 million shillings.

On June 8, 2020, a warrant officer II, Gordon Kababure was arraigned before the General Court Martial and charged with theft of 2.3 billion Shillings from Total Uganda.

Kababure had reportedly forged 13 fuel cards and pretended that the money was for routine fuel for the Land Forces of UPDF which was not the case.

The case returns to court on December 9th, 2020 for mention.

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