A dispute has intensified between Alebtong district chairperson, David Kennedy Odongo, and the chief administrative officer (CAO), Robert Abinaitwe, concerning the allocation of contracts. Odongo has called upon the Police and the Inspector General of Government to investigate Abinaitwe’s actions related to contract awarding.
In the previous month, Odongo suspended the members of the procurement and contract committee, citing alleged irregularities in the awarding of contracts for the financial year 2023/2024.
Recently, Odongo stated that Abinaitwe disregarded his decision and advised the committee to continue with the contract awarding process. The committee proceeded to award the contracts and released the list of awardees, contrary to Odongo’s earlier directive.
In a statement issued on September 21, Odongo pointed out that there were “certain irregularities that are in violation of the key regulations outlined in the PPDA (Public Procurement and Disposal of Public Assets) Act.”
Five days later, CAO Abinaitwe stated that Odongo’s actions were not in accordance with the law, and he advised the public servants to proceed with the contract awards. He mentioned his intention to seek further advice from the PPDA and the solicitor general and to contact the minister regarding the legality of Odongo’s actions.
On a subsequent occasion, Odongo expressed his intention to involve the Police and the Inspector General of Government in the matter and requested an investigation into the actions of the entire team, including the CAO. He claimed that the contract awarding process was illegal and had violated the PPDA Act.
Gilian Akullo, the Alebtong resident district commissioner responsible for district security, supported Odongo’s stance, expressing concern about the lack of transparency in the contract award process. Akullo called for the intervention of the Inspectorate of Government, stating that crucial information regarding contract awards had not been shared with the district chairperson, and decisions appeared to be made by a single individual.