Finance Ministry and UIA Under Scrutiny After IGG Raid – The Ankole Times

Finance Ministry and UIA Under Scrutiny After IGG Raid

Monday, February 5, 2024

On February 2, 2024, Finance Minister Matia Kasaija and top officials from Uganda Investment Authority (UIA) visited the Kampala Industrial and Business Park (KIBP) at Namanve, funded by donors, amidst an ongoing graft probe causing panic among officials.

Minister Matia Kasaija, along with State Minister for Planning and Economic Development Henry Musasizi and State Minister for Investment and Privatisation Evelyn Anite, examined the progress of works at Namanve Industrial Park. The visit followed an earlier raid by the Inspectorate of Government (IG) on UIA offices in Kololo, focusing on alleged corruption in managing KIBP.

The delegation, led by Kasaija, included UIA board chairperson Morrison Rwakakamba and Director General Robert Mukiza. The visit came after weeks of anxiety and panic at UIA, where the ongoing investigations are reportedly centered on various managers.

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Reports suggest that the Finance ministers’ inspection visit was not adequately communicated to their staff at the ministry. Even before whistleblowers approached the Inspectorate of Government, complaints about mismanagement of the KIBP project were reportedly ignored.

In 2018, the Ministry borrowed €249m to finance KIBP development for industrialization. The project, facing delays and reported progress at 45%, is expected to be completed by September 2025. Allegations of extortion, land parceling issues, and inflated development costs have plagued the project.

Minister Evelyn Anite, overseeing UIA, reassured that the project is on course, dismissing accusations as challenges that are being addressed. She emphasized accountability within the UIA board and awaited the IGG findings.

Following the IGG raid, UIA Director General Robert Mukiza held meetings with senior management and staff to prepare for potential probe outcomes. Insiders revealed a sense of panic among staff awaiting the investigation results, primarily focusing on several managers and the board.

The relationship between the UIA board leadership and top management is reportedly strained over various issues. The IGG probe is expected to also scrutinize officials in the Ministry of Finance for alleged cover-ups, as UIA is responsible for initiating and supporting government investment initiatives and policies.

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