Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The Ugandan government loses 20 trillion Shillings every year through corruption, according to a survey conducted by the Inspectorate of Government.
The Deputy Inspector General of Government (IGG) Anne Muheirwe Twinomugisha, says that the inspectorate, together with the German Society for International Co-operation, conducted a survey in various government departments and discovered that Uganda loses money in almost each of the sectors of the economy.
According to the survey, at least 131 billion Shillings is lost through taxation, 459 billion Shillings lost in user fees utilities, another 820 billion Shillings lost in natural resources, and 15 billion Shillings lost in environmental degradation. The survey also found that two billion Shillings is lost as a result of absenteeism in government departments, 451 billion Shillings in health care and education services, 86 billion Shillings in security provision, 590 billion Shillings in procurement and budgeting, and 233 billion Shillings in regulation.
Twinomugisha was speaking during the Kigezi anti-corruption convention organized by an anti-corruption advocacy non-government organization Kick Corruption out of Uganda (KICK-U), at Chepha Inn Hotel in Kabale district on Friday evening.
Twinomugisha said that half of the lost money could have been saved if there were enough efforts by all the responsible people including locals to whistle blow corrupt government officials. She says that the findings of the survey were discussed during a cabinet meeting last month to enable appropriate interventions to reverse the trend.
Robert Kakuru Byamugisha, the Executive Director of KICK-U observes that corrupt leaders have mastered tricks of evading the law while others connive with those who are supposed to implicate them.
Donatus Eguma, a resident of Southern division in Kabale municipality instead blamed the Inspectorate of Government and top leaders for shielding corrupt government officials.
Eguma cited an example of President Yoweri Museveni warning a section of people including legislators against attacking the Minister of Science, Technology, and Innovation, Dr Monica Musenero who was accused of mismanaging COVID-19 funds. He says that such statements demoralize whistleblowers.
But in response, Twinomugisha said that in the 2020/2021 financial year, the Inspectorate managed to recover 2.2 billion Shillings that had been embezzled by government officials. She says that out of this, 700 million Shillings was recovered through court orders.
Sam Agaba, head of the IG Kigezi branch says that in the 2020/2021 financial year, shillings 700 million were recovered from the Kigezi sub-region. Agaba however expressed a challenge of the funding gap which he says is hindering their smooth work in Kigezi.