Two Ntungamo District officials have been arrested by police in connection with the theft of Shs 8 million intended for the Parish Development Model (PDM).
After it was discovered that Seth Niwagaba, the district commercial officer, and Isaac Arinaitwe, the Kibatsi Sub County Community Development Officer, conspired and stole Shs 8 million from the Rukarango-Kibatsi PDM Sacco, they were arrested on the orders of Joveline Kyomukama Kariisa, the PDM’s Deputy National Coordinator.
In the previous fiscal year, Ntungamo district established 129 PDM Saccos to benefit from a significant allocation of Shs 745 million for the initiative.
The goal was to encourage grassroots development.
The Deputy National Coordinator of the Parish Development Model, Joveline Kyomukama Kariisa, stated unequivocally that the government would take harsh action against dishonest civil workers who engage in such malpractices. Addressing the issue during the return of stolen cash to the genuine beneficiaries in Kibatsi, she underlined the importance of restoring Ugandans’ faith and optimism. Kariisa compared corrupt officials’ actions to a “gold ring in a pig’s snout,” stressing that such behavior must stop.
The finding of ghost beneficiaries within the PDM system shocked Samuel Mucunguzi Rwakigoba Salongo, the Ntungamo district LCV. He vowed to punish individuals involved in corruption, telling the technical team that they would face consequences for their actions.
Niwamanya Robert Kamuntu, Deputy RDC Ntungamo, congratulated members of the Rukarango-Kibatsi PDM Sacco for swiftly reporting the theft of cash. He acknowledged that their vigilance was critical in ensuring that the perpetrators did not go unpunished. Kamuntu stated that the criminals would face harsh punishment in order to act as a deterrence to others.
Niwagaba and Arinaitwe remain in detention as investigations continue, under the supervision of DPC Ntungamo Bushaija Hannington Kanimi.
The recovery of the stolen cash, as well as the subsequent actions taken by authorities, convey a strong message against corruption and highlight the government’s commitment to protecting public funds. It is hoped that such efforts will restore trust in civil officials and ensure that the money distributed actually serve the areas for which they are meant.