Leaders in Teso and Karamoja have blasted Musa Ecweru, the Disaster State Minister for attempting to suspend activities of NUSAF from their area.
Ecweru recently wrote a letter suspending the activities of the Northern Uganda Social Action Fund in Karamoja and Teso. He accused Non Governmental Organizations implementing the program of being anti-government and failing to account for the funds received.
However leaders from the affected areas have vowed to disregard the directive. Peter Ken Lochap, the Moroto LC5 Chairperson, says that the directive would have been honored if it was made by the Minister in-charge of Northern Uganda David Wakikona who is in charge of NUSAF.
Lochap says Ecweru's directive if implemented would deny Karamoja benefits like security roads, schools and health centers which are being funded under NUSAF.
The Northern Uganda Social Action Fund (NUSAF) was designed to improve the lives of people in the Lord's Resistance Army-affected districts.
Patrick Amuriat Oboi, the Chairman of Teso Parliamentary group says the Prime Minister should make Ecweru to substantiate his claims that NGO's are using NUSAF and NUREP funds for anti-government activities.
Amuriat says the claim in effect means that the European Union which funds NUSAF is indirectly funding anti-government activities in Teso and Karamoja. Amuriat however says the Prime Minister Apollo Nsimbambi, has communicated to Teso Parliamentary group to disregard Ecweru's directive.
He says the Prime Minister described the directive as unfortunate and urged all NGO's to continue with their work. Peter Omolo, the Soroti County Member of Parliament, says Ecweru's directive could have been aimed at blocking NGO's which are associated with his political opponents from accessing NUSAF funds.
Omolo cites Amuria Development Agency which is associated with Julius Ochen the Amuria LC5 Chairperson which is implementing NUSAF activities.
Ochen and Ecweru are known political rivals. But Terrance Acia, the Bokora County Member of Parliament, says Teso and Karamoja parliamentary group should meet and look into the issues raised by Ecweru.
Acia says Ecweru could have raised a genuine concern about accountability but erred by attempting to suspend the program without the consent of the Prime Minister.