KAMPALA – The Anti-Corruption Court has asked the chairperson of Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC), Sylvia Muwebwa Ntambi, to appear on October 29 without fail to answer several charges of causing financial loss, embezzlement, corruption, abuse of office and conspiracy to defraud.
Ms Ntambi failed to appear before court on Wednesday, 07 October 2020 following earlier criminal summons issued last year, with her lawyers saying she is suffering from hypertension.
Her lawyers adduced medical forms before court, indicating that she is sick and therefore she couldn’t attend court proceedings.
Chief Magistrate Pamela Lamunu Ocaya then adjourned the matter to October 29 and asked Ms Ntambi to appear without fail.
A whistleblower complaint filed before the President’s Office lifted the lid on the current troubles at the Equal Opportunities Commission, with the Ms Ntambi, now facing charges of corruption too.
Ms Ntambi joins the institution’s accounting officer, and eight other senior staff earlier charged with the same offences. Ms Ntambi, was last month added to the charge sheet as A10 before the Anti-Corruption Court in the case where nine other officials of the commission have been undergoing trial, charged with defrauding the government of millions of shillings.
Ms Muwebwa was charged in absentia in the Anti-Corruption Court on Tuesday, September 22, 2020. She was represented by her lawyers who pledged to present her before court on September 30 to take plea.The charges are as a result of a May 22, 2019 complaint to President Museveni about several staff issues at the commission, with the whistleblower lifting the lid on corrupt practices at the Commission, that were later investigated by the State House Anti-Corruption Commission.
“It was the source of all problems we are facing now and already, many senior officials have been facing court since last year,” a senior official said on Thursday.
The Director of Public Prosecutions has added Ms Muwebwa to the charge sheet that already has Mr Mujuni Mpitsi, the Secretary to the Commission; Olwor Sunday Nicholas, the Undersecretary; Moses Mugabe, a Senior Monitoring and Evaluation Officer and Byangire Harriet, a Senior Accountant. Others are: Edith Kamahoro, a Senior Personal Secretary; Kwesiga Ronnie, an Accounts Assistant; Jjemba Evans, the Principle Compliance Officer; Kwihangana Manasseh, a Senior Compliance Officer and Sarah Nassanga an Office Attendant.All the 9 officials were charged before the same court last year and have been undergoing trial.
According to the full details of the charge sheet presented before the court in Kololo, the officials face 25 corruption-related cases ranging from causing financial loss, conspiracy to defraud, embezzlement, corruption and abuse of office.Ms Ntambi, Ms Kamahoro and Mr Mpitsi between January 6, 2019 and April 30, 2019, allegedly conspired to defraud the government of more than Shs 9m.