KAMPALA: Ugandans will this year be involved in verifying the wealth and assets of government officials of Bank of Uganda (BoU), Ministries of Health and Finance and those of the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM), according to the Inspector General of Government (IGG), Justice Irene Mulyagonja.
Justice Mulyagonja explained that her institution is charged with fighting corruption and that they have been receiving complaints from the public that some public officials under declare their wealth.
She said while speaking yesterday in Kampala during the launch of the 2019 online declaration period, where she encouraged the leaders who are mandated to declare their assets and liabilities to do so in time and beat the March 31 deadline.
“This financial year, the Inspectorate of Government (IG) is verifying all leaders in Bank of Uganda, Ministry of Finance, OPM and Ministry of Health. Other ministries, institutions, Local Government and agencies will be brought on board later and we shall be involving the public in the exercise,” she said.
She said her office wants to compare and see whether what the officials have declared is what is exactly what the locals in the areas of their respective residences know of what they won.
“I would like, therefore, to call upon all leaders to make their declarations correctly and within the prescribed time to avoid being caught on the wrong side of the law,” Justice Mulyagonja said.
She warned that those who will under declare their assets will be handled by the Leadership Code Tribunal that will soon be put in place.
Speaking at the same launch, the permanent secretary in the Ministry of ICT and National Guidance, Mr Vincent Bagiire, said government agencies are in the process of sharing data that will make it hard for the leaders to under declare their wealth.
“This is because you may under declare some assets such as land but when you purchase land, the Ministry of Lands captures that transaction, meaning if these government agencies shared data, it would be very hard for the leaders to under declare their wealth,” Mr Bagiire explained.
Last year Mulyagonja said she was investigating the alleged illicit accumulation of the former BoU executive director of supervision Justine Bagyenda but has never released the report to the public.
Law. The Leadership Code Act provides for minimum standards of behaviour and conduct of leaders to declare their income, assets and liabilities within three months after being appointed or elected into a position of leadership and thereafter every two years during the month of March.
Statistics from the IGG’s office show that ever since the online declaration of incomes, assets and liabilities was launched in 2016 shifting from the manual approach, the ombudsman brags of 90.6 per cent compliance rate that saw 22,645 leaders successfully submit their declarations online in 2017.