State House, Okello House Owner Bicker over Rent

State House, Okello House Owner Bicker over Rent

By Serestino Tusingwire

State House is allegedly em­broiled in a row with the owner of one of its rented premises over pay­ment of rent in lo­cal cur­rency.

The Par­lia­men­t’s Pub­lic Ac­counts Com­mit­tee (PAC) while meeting with officials from state house on Thursday learnt that Alexan­der Okello, the owner of Okello House in Nakasero, an up­scale sub­urb in Kam­pala, which houses some of the State House staff, wants the in­sti­tu­tion to pay its rent in dol­lars.

Lucy Naky­obe, the State House comp­trol­ler told MPs on the com­mit­tee that ac­cord­ing to Min­istry of Fi­nance stand­ing or­ders, all gov­ern­ment in­sti­tu­tions must trans­act busi­ness, in­clud­ing pay­ment of rent in Uganda shillings.

Naky­obe and some other officials had ap­peared be­fore the com­mit­tee to re­spond to queries raised by the Au­di­tor Gen­eral in his June 2014 and 2015 fi­nan­cial au­dits.

In the June 2015 re­port, the Au­di­tor Gen­eral queried the high rent ar­rears to­tal­ing Ugx1.2 bil­lion, which State House had ac­crued by the time the au­dit had been done, yet the ten­ancy agree­ment had ex­pired in 2013.

Some leg­is­la­tors in­clud­ing Theodore Ssekikubo, Lwemiyaga County MP, won­dered why govern­ment has failed to find per­ma­nent oc­cu­pancy for its staff in spite of hav­ing a lot of space at State House, En­tebbe.

Naky­obe how­ever ex­plained that the mat­ter was re­solved and the ar­rears cleared.