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Yoweri Museveni Received a Bribe
Before you wonder whether Patrick Ho bribed Kutesa and Yoweri Museveni, let’s refresh our memories and possibly come to a conclusion that to believe or support Yoweri Museveni, you have to be either stupid or brave.
In 1998 Parliament stopped the sale of 49 per cent shares of the Uganda Commercial Bank, then the biggest bank in the country and entirely government-owned, to a Malaysian company. Then Maj. Gen. Salim Saleh resigned as defence adviser, after admitting a role in brokering the deal with Westmont Land Asia, the successful bidder, which had been found to be a “briefcase company” with no banking experience. Gen. Saleh was later alleged to be the majority shareholder in Westmont and soon after the purchase, he sold its shares to Green Land Investments, another company in which he was also a shareholder. In his defence before Chief Magistrate Catherine Bamugemereire over the mismanagement of the now defunct Greenland Bank, Sulaiman Kiggundu, who was the bank’s managing director, named Yoweri Museveni as the “key person” behind the irregular purchase of the UCB shares by Greenland Bank.
A few years back, in 1995, world Bank had recapitalised UCB with USD 60M.
During the 1990s, the army was involved in a number of procurement scandals. Undersize uniforms from China, not-up-to-standard food rations from South Africa and 90 second-hand tanks, several unserviceable, from Belarus, were procured. But probably the most famous of the scandals was what came to be known as the junk helicopter scandal, in which two out of four unserviceable Mi-24 helicopters were procured. Four of the MiGs were modified in Israel and delivered in the country but two of them could not fly. The deal to supply the helicopters, which was brokered by Emma Katto, then a race-car driver, was aided by Gen. Salim Saleh, who “convinced” Museveni to okay the deal. Gen. Saleh was as a result to bag a commission of $200,000 off each of the four helicopters. He would later tell a commission of inquiry into the matter in 2001 that he had informed the President of the “commission” he had been promised and Yoweri Museveni had allowed him to use it in the war against Joseph Kony’s rebels in northern Uganda.
Muhwezi, Kutesa were censured in1998.
Then Brig. Jim Muhwezi, the minister of education, was forced to resign by the Sixth Parliament due to alleged mismanagement of the then newly-established Universal Primary Education. The Sixth Parliament, reputed as probably the most independent and vibrant during Museveni’s presidency, also forced Sam Kuteesa to resign, accusing him of benefiting from the sale of the former Uganda Airlines. The two, who were forced to resign over alleged abuse of office, were never prosecuted and bounced back into Cabinet in 2001, when Mr Museveni was re-elected. The government took the view that their censure was “unfair”. Muhwezi, particularly argued further that by having stayed off Cabinet for years, he had been punished enough. Later, he was again dropped from Cabinet over the Global Fund scandal.
The Valley Dam Scandal 2003 followed . Shs3.5 billion meant to build valley dams to trap water in the semi-arid areas of eastern Uganda disappeared with no visible valley dams to show for it. It became the talk of town that Dr Specioza Kazibwe, whose Agriculture ministry was supposed to supervise the dam construction, said the valley dams had been built but those who did not want to see them did not see them.
It emerged in 1996 that Danze, a company that belonged to the National Resistance Movement with Museveni as its chairman, had been evading taxes for over a decade. Investigations by the Anti-Smuggling Unit found, for example, that over Shs6b (about $3.4m) had been smuggled over a one-year period. The company, which had been managed by some of the key NRM leaders, including First Deputy Prime Minister Eriya Kategaya, was accordingly disbanded.
During investigations into the Danze issues, M7 was asked about the same. He denied out right. several years later during fundraising for the NRM house, he accused Besigye and Nandala of failing his company that might have generated funds for the party house.
In 2003 Complaints of money meant for soldiers who did not exist had been popping up often in earlier years, but in 2003, what came to be known as the ghost soldier scandal clearly unfolded. It emerged that units, especially in northern Uganda where the war against Joseph Kony’s Lord’s Resistance Army was raging, had their numbers exaggerated so that commanders would make a difference off the salaries. The same problem also afflicted military units that operated in the Congo and western Uganda against the Allied Democratic Forces rebels. Some estimates show that Uganda lost about $324 million in 20 years through ghost soldiers.
My friend just hinted that even the budget for the function that was talking about corruption was exaggerated.