Akol In Hot Soup as COSASE Faults her on UGX6bn Oil Cash Bonanza

Akol In Hot Soup as COSASE Faults her on UGX6bn Oil Cash Bonanza

By Serestino Tusingwire

The Parliamentary Committee on Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises  which is probing the Shs6bn oil cash bonanza has faulted officials of the Uganda Revenue Authority for not consulting the board before paying out the money to 42 government officials.

The money which is commonly referred to as a presidential handshake was a reward for those that took part in the oil arbitration case that saw Uganda awarded Sh824Bn in capital gains tax from Tullow Oil.

According to the URA Board Chairman, Simon Kagugube, the board was not consulted on issuing out this money.

“The board did not play any role in the payment. The matter never came before the board. We knew about the payment in media” Kagugube said.

When Committee member Francis Mwijukye asked the board if it thought it was irregular for such a huge sum of money to be taken from the URA account, Kagugube answered that, “As the board which authorizes the budget, we find the payment irregular since the money used was not budgeted for.”

“In cases where a supplementary budget expenditure is to occur, board must approve or be made aware,” he added.

Committee member Medard Lubega Segoona therefore tasked the URA Commissioner General Doris Akol to explain how the money was picked from the URA fund and paid out without the board’s approval.

“I got the money from the URA expenditure account 2016/17 FY. The URA statue does say at some point that the minister can give instruction to the URA board about its functioning. I’ve seen a letter from MoU authorizing CG to use certain funds to pay and it would be reimbursed through supplementary budget.” Akol defended herself.

The committee chairperson Abdul Katuntu has adjourned the committee to Thursday this week when the grilling will continue.