Lands Minister Betty Amongi risks losing her job for breaching of the Leadership Code Act, 2002. She is accused of using her influence to front her company in the acquisition of properties through the Custodian Board.
The Minister, also a member of the Custodian Board now finds herself at risk after it emerged that she could be charged for influence peddling and conflict of interest.
Amongi is the majority shareholder in Amobet Investments Limited which she co-owns with her sister Adongo Keti. She is under investigation for having used her office as a Minister and a member of the Custodian Board to influence temporary possession of Plot 29 on Acacia Avenue in Kololo. The property housing Midcom telecom is registered in the names of Toshak Munubhai Patel.
Amongi is also being investigated over the acquisition of a house on Prince Charles Drive in Kololo, land in Industrial area and another land in Mengo-Kibuuga. Letters of allocation from the Custodian Board indicate that Amongi’s company would pay only 550,000 Shillings per month for each of the four properties.
The Minister finally appeared before the Justice Catherine Bamugemereire Commission at which she was tasked to explain her dealings with Amobet Investments and her role in the temporal acquisition of the said properties. It emerged that the Minister could have been obtaining information from the Custodian Board which she would then leak to her company.
Evidence before the Commission indicate that Amobet Investments applied to the Custodian Board for the properties in dispute on 12th December 2017. The Board then approved the application in favor Amobet investments on 14th December 2017.
Amongi could not convince Justice Catherine Bamugemereire and her Commissioners that she was not privy to the information as a Minster and a member of the Custodian Board.
She initially said she was not aware of any law that prohibits a Minster from engaging in business and that she did not breach the leadership code by presiding over a process in which she and her company had interest.
The Commission’s Lead Counsel, Ebert Byenkya subjected Amongi to probing questions about how Amobet Managing Director, Henry Mubiru would know that the said properties were available at the Custodian Board for temporary possession.