Protests as Local Government Ministry Exonerates Semuto Town Clerk

2693 Views Semuto, Uganda

In short
Patrick K. Mutabwire, the permanent secretary ministry of local government has written to Nakaseke Chief Administrative Officer saying the committee has found not substantial grounds warranting the removal of the town clerk.

The local government ministry has cleared Emmanuel Luyonde, the Semuto town clerk in Nakaseke district of allegations of abuse of office sparking off fresh protests from local politicians and residents. In June 2013, councilors of Semuto town council unanimously passed a vote of no confidence in Luyonde over allegations of mismanagement of funds, abuse of office, incompetence and misuse of government vehicle. They interdicted the town clerk petitioned the Nakaseke Chief Administrative Officer and local government ministry to remove him from office.

As a result, the local government ministry instituted investigations into the allegations against Luyonde. Patrick K. Mutabwire, the permanent secretary ministry of local government has written to Nakaseke Chief Administrative Officer saying the committee has found not substantial grounds warranting the removal of the town clerk. He however, directs Ezaruku Kazimiro, the Nakaseke Chief Administrative Officer to implement the other recommendations in the report compiled by his assistant Commissioner Issa Gumonye and the senior urban officer Prossy Nampijja senior urban officer for the smooth operations of the town council.

The report faults councilors for passing unlawful resolution when they voted to hire out government vehicles for private work. The report also exonerates the town clerk of alleged failure to present monthly financial reports to council yet he took a disciplinary action against the treasurer who is the responsible officer. However, the committee found the town clerk guilty of issuing out NAADS items in disregard to the procurement guidelines and failure to engage beneficiaries in the budgeting process. The committee noted that these are minor issues to warrant the removal of the town clerk and recommended mentoring and technical support.

Richard Alioka, the Nakaseke Chief Administrative Officer has confirmed receiving the report clearing the town clerk. He says some of the issues raised in the report are administrative and will be handled when Luyonde returns to office. The report clearing Luyonde has not gone down well with residents and councilors. Dan Kibuuka, the chairperson Parish Development Committees says officials appointed to investigate the town clerk just favored adding that, there were sufficient grounds for his removal from office.
 
Sulayiti Sserunjogi, the chairperson Semuto town council water board says forcing back the town clerk is erroneous as some residents have vowed to block him from returning to office saying they are fed up with him. He cites cases the failure by the town clerk to use a generator donated by government to pump water since 2011 leading to water shortage in town. Michael Lwalanda, the LC 3 chairperson Semuto town council says by recommending that the town clerk needs mentoring and technical support, the committee reaffirms their position that he is incompetent.
 
Lwalanda is worried that residents may boycott council activities to protest the return of the town. Efforts by URN to talk to Luyonde about the report were unfruitful but he insisted on his innocence in earlier interviews saying the allegations were baseless.
 
 

 

About the author

Brian Luwaga
Since Brian Luwaga joined Uganda Radio Network in 2011, he is still amazed how, "URN is a place that gives journalists a chance to enhance their skills . It gives a journalist an opportunity to adopt and master various aspects of journalism that include radio broadcast, social media, photography and television production."

A practicing journalist since 2009, first with Star FM, Luwaga has always been keen to write about the concerns of the "common person." Based for much of his career in Luweero, Luwaga takes it as a compliment if politicians complain that his reporting is too harsh.

In his journalism, Luwaga likes to merge the past with the present. He believes you cannot understand what is happening now, if you do not have a grounding in the past. Brian Luwaga is the Luweero URN bureau chief. Nakasongola, Nakaseke, Mityana, Mubende and Wakiso districts fall under his docket.

Luwaga is interested in humanitarian work and is a keen Rotarian.