Thursday 10th December, 1998
Parliament met at 2.15 p.m in Parliament House, Kampala
(The Deputy Speaker, Mr. Edward Ssekandi in the Chair).
(The House was called to order)
THE CHAIRMAN, SELECT COMMITTEE ON PRIVATISATION (Mr. Aisu Omongole): Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. I am only begging to be allowed to lay on the Table documents that I and my Committee used for this investigation. I have here documents relating to various transactions in the matter of the selling of UCB, I have minutes, I have letters from Bank of Uganda, I have letters from Westmont and I have letters from the teams that went to Malaysia to investigate the credibility of Westmont.
On the matters of Uganda Airlines, I have here minutes of the various DRIC meetings, minutes of ENHAS meetings, correspondences between the respective Ministers and the MD of CAA and other related bank correspondences, Mr. Speaker. On the question of Transocean Uganda limited we also have correspondences, minutes of DRIC, letters and reports of valuation and contract signed between M/s Almet and Transocean Uganda Limited. Because of the technology we have in Parliament, our records of interviews are not yet ready but when they are ready we will lay them on the Table, Mr. Speaker. Thank you.
MR. DICK NYAI (Ayivu county, Arua): Mr. speaker, on Tuesday when hon. Omongole presented the report of the Select Committee on Privatisation to this House, my blood ran cold and, it brought to mind a quotation which is stuck with me from my days in doing english literature from the times of Greeks who believed in many gods: the god of fire, of water, of war, of love; that those whom the gods want to destroy they first make them mad. And Mr. Speaker, I am terribly, terribly, afraid for this country; are we running crazy so that this country gets destroyed? Are we doing this with a few people and should we condone them?
On page 6 of the Report it is very clear that the Committee as said, as example to the above facts the Committee is examining the following enterprises; they list 6 companies. Then they go ahead and say while the Committee still continues with its work, it can report on the following enterprises and it is a final complete report on the following enterprises of Transocean Uganda Limited, Uganda Airlines Corporation, Uganda Commercial Bank Limited. And, therefore, Mr. Speaker, I believe that all issues related to those three corporations can be exhaustively dealt with at this Session. I believe that those who have been mentioned are mentioned in connection to existing operational issues, they can access their files, they can even bring their files to this House and make reference to them in their own defence. I do not believe, Mr. Speaker, that we need to give them one year to do research for a doctoral thesis, it is unnecessary. I was intrigued, Mr. Speaker, that her Excellency the Vice President and the Minister for Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries was very eloquent about the need for this Parliament to ensure that those they want to try are given justice. Whereas her Excellency the Vice President is asking for justice for four,five,six people, I wonder whether she knows that she holds a brief from the people of Uganda a great trust by the people of Uganda to act in their behalf and to protect their interest. If the Vice President is aware of these onerous duties, then it is her duty to make sure the justice to the people of Uganda is expeditiously afforded, because I know there is a quotation that justice delayed, is justice denied.
What is the context of our debate here? Our debate here originates from the way and the system in which this present system of Government and governance came into being. I remember in the hey-days there were a lot of speeches made and among them was the following statement, Mr. Speaker, that this is no formal change of guards, but this is a fundamental change. Those who went to fight fought so that they can come back and get rid of corruption, get rid of tribalism, get rid of sectarianism, unlike the pigs which led the rebellion in the Animal Farm and had only 7 points, this Government had a 10 Point Programme. But, Mr. Speaker, the context in which we are now talking is that this fundamental change immediately started suffering from inaccuracy, in broken promises which the ordinary man translates as lies which is corruption of society's moral fibre.
Example, Mr. Speaker, after the Presidential elections, His Excellency the President travelled to Ajdumani and then to Moyo and promised the people there that he had already secured funds for the Karuma/Pakwach/ Arua/ Moyo road. He also said electricity would soon be taken there. As if that was not enough on May 1st this year the Prime Minister officiated at the Labour day celebration in Arua and at that celebration I had a privilege of sitting next to hon. Joash Mayanja Nkangi who had been Minister of Finance for a very long time, the same promises were made and hon. Joash Mayanja Nkangi assured me that all the funding had been secured. Two weeks thereafter, His Excellency the President accompanied by the President of the Republic of Kenya went to Arua and we were told that "I have brought with me Daniel Arap Moi to be a witness that I owe the people of Arua a debt and which debt I am about to fulfil." And, Mr. Speaker, your Colleague hon. Ayume, was in Arua then, he was asked to stand up and explain how the money for the electricity dams were ready available and how the roads were about to start. Then we come here in June at the opening of this Session of Parliament His Excellency the President said, the Parkwach/ Karuma road cannot be done because the feasibility studies have not been completed. Now, when was the money in 1996 available and on what studies?
Hon. Katureebe talked in a very good tone yesterday about how this Parliament should trust the organs which it established to apprehend and try criminals. The problem is, Mr. Speaker, I want the Attorney General to know that whereas this House debated the Uganda Railways Corporation in great detail and exposed a lot of wickedness therein up to today not one of those people has a case filed against them. On the contrary, Mr. speaker, the then Managing Director of Uganda Railways Corporation, now has got himself a very juicy job; I am told he is one of the debt collectors of Kampala City council. Maybe, his connection to the Town Clerk is an issue.
I would like to say this, there is a popular saying that it takes a thief to catch a thief. I would like, Mr. Speaker, through you advise Her Excellency the Vice President that that motto is a very dangerous motto, because eventually whether one catches the other both of you are thieves. I would rather she presides over a Ministry which is so transparent she allows that those who have done wrong be prosecuted and dealt with expeditiously.
I was very much disappointed, Mr. Speaker, on hearing Her Excellency saying, the money for valley dams was used for paying transport allowances. Transport allowance, Mr. Speaker, I asking myself to where? To where there are no dams? I believe that both me and her Excellency the Vice President will agree on one thing that we shall put our faith and trust in the Police force who are trained in investigation and others in prosecution.
Yesterday hon. Babu said that this House should be very grateful to Maj. Gen.Salim Saleh for having resigned. Mr. Speaker, I want to say this. In our village, if you go and murder all in the homestead in a clan, then you go back to the clan and say I have repented, I am not going to do this again. I wonder whether the clan will sing praises in your honour. I suspect the most immediate result will be to lynch you.
What are the major issues, Mr. Speaker? I believe one of the major issues in this debate on the Floor now is the issue of the possibility and I am only saying possibility of collusion of the Executive to form a protective circle around their Members. I hope it does not happen, I am only saying I suspect this because right from Tuesday when the report was made the Rt. hon. Prime Minister was begging for time, Her Excellency the Vice President was begging for time and yet I believe all of them know and all clear headed and clean Ministers here know that the people of Uganda expect judicious and immediate justice. We are holding office here in trust - the trust of our people. What we should be able to ask here is where did Maj. Gen. Salim Saleh make these millions in the short time of 13 years? My friend hon. Joash Mayanja Nkangi who left King's College Buddo in 1948, when I had not gone to Primary one, I went to primary one in 1949 -(Laughter)
MR. MAYANJA NKANGI: Point of information. Mr. Speaker, I want to inform my friend that I was not in Buddo in 1949. (Laughter).
MR. NYAI: What is a year among friends give or take. What I was saying, Mr. Speaker, is with his wealth of experience, with his knowledge, with his professionalism and the entire leadership of the party I do not believe that hon. Joash Mayanja Nkangi can sign a cheque for 1 million shillings which he calls his own. Where did Salim Saleh get this money? How does his relationship to the President affect his fortunes? I am asking these questions, Mr. speaker, because there other people who went to the bush, people like hon.Maj.John Kazoora here. For a slight infraction, he found himself in Luzira. There was then Maj.Kaka, I believe now he is a colonel and is the Chief of Staff in Rwanda. He was suspected of dealing in some smuggled coffee. He was locked up in Luzira. Why has Salim Saleh not been locked up, why is he being forgiven? Where does the president get powers to forgive individuals on loses made to this Government to the people of Uganda? And the other thing, Mr. Speaker, is some of us are getting very well -(Interruption)
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: You have information from the hon. Member.
MR. NYAI: No, I am not accepting any information.
THE MEMBERS: You are well informed?
MR. NYAI: I am very well informed -(Laughter). What I was going to ask further is this, what signal is the President giving this country when he perennially and continuously appoints to higher offices of RDCs people who have failed in the elections? Does it mean that our Colleagues here who defeated those people are not worth being here that the President has more trust in those who lost the elections? (Dr Rugunda rose_) I am only asking and I am sure His Excellency will answer in due time, and I do not know that His Excellency is hon. Rugunda (Laughter).
There was a diversionary tactic because of this debate here. In today's newspapers, His Excellency is quoted as saying that the cause of corruption in Uganda is the Judiciary. Mr. Speaker, how many people have we filed cases against and they have not been tried? Are we talking about hon. Ekemu and therefore, hon. Ekemu is the personification of corruption? I do not believe so. Let us be aware of the feelings of our people. It is true our people have been brutalised, they have been intimidated and coerced into the movement. It is true some of them, out of real love for the Movement, but then, Mr. Speaker, it would be dangerous for Uganda if the Movement is now being used as a shield to protect individuals in their sins. I am saying this because in some tribes, if I steal as Dick Nyai, when I am caught, I say, 'oh, you are now catching me because of Ayivu. Ayivu, you run and protect me!' Ayivu was not there when I was stealing. You face your music.
We,in this House, Mr. Speaker, as I come to wind up, have to make a choice. Are we in this House to defend ourselves and our Colleagues who are here, who hold positions of trust or are we here to defend and protect the interest of the great majority of Ugandan people? Ad the Bible says, Mr. Speaker, I will say, as for me, I will serve the people of Uganda.
Allow me to make one comment. On the night the report was delivered, UTV had no mention of this report, absolutely. Then the news time on Radio Uganda, news hour was taken over by Salim Saleh for his personal propaganda. I believe, Mr. Speaker, the House will only be asking the correct thing, that we must get daily a thirty or one hour programme 'Today in Parliament', back on television and on radio. Mr Speaker. I would have wished to say a lot of other things but since I said that these matters are conclusive and the Ministers responsible have their files, I think we shall allow them time presently to bring those files, read them to us and we pass judgement. I thank you.
MR. OKELLO OKELLO (Chwa County, Kitgum): Mr. Speaker, I would like to add my voice to those of my Colleagues who have already thanked the committee for a thorough job. Mr. Speaker, I do not normally spend my own money binding a committee report; but see what I have done. I consider this document to be one of my most valuable documents. I may even make a will to be buried with this thing.
This report reads like a fiction. It reads like a fiction. If you do not live here, you will not believe that the revelations in this report are true, but they are true. I served in Government for 26 years, from the late 1960s until 2nd July 1996. I have seen, I have worked in all the post Independence Governments of this country and I think I am one of those in the best of positions to compare and contrast those Governments. But Mr. Speaker, I am sorry to say, right from the on set, that we do not have an effective Government as of today. What we have is something similar to Government. I dare say so.
This matter of privatisation started while I was still in office. I even attended some of the meetings. Mr. Speaker and hon. Members, do not be mistaken. Privatisation in Uganda was never, is never, will never be intended to benefit the people of Uganda as a whole. It was a scheme, a design, just to enrich a few individual Ugandans. Even the interest of the State, has not been taken care of. I will give you one example only. Some of these enterprises have got land and buildings as major components, but Mr. Speaker, the valuation of these properties has never been known to Government. What happened is that some private firms or valuers were commissioned to carry out the valuation on behalf of Government. When I was still in office, I wrote to the Minister Finance to find out why this should be the case. Up to now my letter has not been replied. I was called however by the late Kafumbe Mukasa who told me that this Government had a different method of work and yet, Mr. Speaker, the colonial Government set up valuation office in 1948 to take care of Government interests in property matters. Whenever there is property to be bought or to be sold where Government has or will have interest, the office of the Chief Government Valuer must give an opinion. But in this matter of privatisation, the office was conveniently and deliberately sidelined. I was told that I would be called upon to verify the charges by the private valuer, whether they were fair or not, I have never seen - I left office without seeing - any request coming to me to go and verify whether the charges were fair. So, the looting was right from day one, it was intentional, it is not something that is starting now.
I really feel hurt that we are once again talking about the sale of Uganda Commercial Bank. I think as the 6th Parliament of Uganda, we should be humble enough and accept a part of the responsibility. If we did not make an about turn after being called in groups and at odd times, by the power that be, if we had stood our ground, that no meant no, we would not be talking about Uganda Commercial Bank today. So, let us take the blame. We messed up this matter ourselves. We did.
Mr. Speaker, - (Interruption)
MRS. NSANGI KAKEMBO: Point of clarification. Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker, and I thank hon. Okello Okello for giving way. I wanted to get it from hon. Okello Okello whether it is the intention of the law which was made for the privatisation process that intended to benefit a few individuals, or whether it is just a few individuals who decided to ignore the law and benefited themselves. That is what I wanted to get clarified on.
MR. OKELLO OKELLO: Mr. Speaker, I take it that there is nobody in this country who is above the law. If you decide to ignore the law, you should be handled by an appropriate authority. Since this was not done, I take it that it was a design!
The second blame I think should go to the people of Uganda generally. We, the people of Uganda are so docile; we are too docile. Really, things that are happening in this country, elsewhere, there should have been demonstrations, there should have been boycott, there should have been what have you. But we clap instead. Right now, a few people are chewing up our country, just a small clique, but we just stand by and watch and clap for them. Honestly, Mr. Speaker, we have to change our mind. As long as we fear the bullet, we shall go all of us. I think we should learn to own this country.
Sometimes, I wonder, I think maybe we have not yet been tortured enough. Sometimes, I really debate within myself, that what would I do if I found a bunch of 20 million fools occupying a beautiful country, which they did not want. How would I deal with them? May be the way we are being handled, what do you do? You cannot be blamed!
DR. KHIDDU MAKUBUYA: Point of order. Mr. Speaker, I have a good deal of respect for Parliament. I have a good deal of respect for hon. Members here. Is it in order for the hon. Okello Okello for Chwa County to use this august Parliament to call all Ugandans fools, a bunch of fools, 20 million fools? Is this language parliamentary? Is he in order to use unparliamentary language?
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: My understanding of the contribution of the member was that if there was. So, this was not in reference to Ugandans but something like it.
MR. OKELLO OKELLO: I thank you for your wise ruling, Mr. Speaker. In February this year, I made a statement at the Conference Centre. I said that there was no corruption in this country. I was misunderstood, but now, I want to be on record, that there is actually no corruption in this country. What you call corruption is something else.
Corruption is a crime. We have a law against corruption. How many people have been prosecuted and jailed under that law? The moment a crime ceases to be punishable by law, it ceases to be a crime. It becomes a norm and that is what we have here. What we call corruption here is pillage, graft, by arrangement, by design. It is alleged for example, that the Minister in charge of Privatisation sold his two houses in Nairobi and gave the money to fight the war, during the bush war and that is why he has been put in charge of selling our country for a song. All these cries of corruption, of what, nobody will listen, because the man is there to pay himself back. But it would appear to me that he has paid to himself more than a hundred-fold. Enough should be enough. Really, some of these things border on primitive accumulation of wealth. You live in a country where a family can hardly earn Shs. 10,000 in a year and your target is that, by the year 2000 you should have US $100mbillion on your account. Why? What for? What will you do with this money? Where is Mobutu? Where is who - why do we not learn? I really would not mind if this money was being spent here to develop this country, I think there would be no murram road in Uganda now, but it would appear the money is being salted away and this money will be lost to the nation and that is my disappointment. My children and my grand children will be paying for air. This is where I really get very disappointed.
Mr. Speaker, the office of the IGG has been mentioned as fighting corruption. Mr. Speaker, I would advise that we abolish that office. That office is a political office put in place to deal with assumed political opponents. The office is worse than useless. I personally submitted a case where Shs.5 million was looted from my small district. It is about a year now, but they have not started investigating. If it was Okello Okello who was reported, he would now be in Luzira. So, that office, actually, to me, the tax payer's money should not be spent on the IGG's office, it is useless.
As I conclude, let me say this. In Acholi we say, a good name is better than riches. "Nying maber loyo lonyo". I know of very many Ministers who are clean, who are good. But Mr. Speaker, on the street, the general public finds it difficult to tell the difference between a good one and a bad one. So, I would advise the good Ministers to form a caucus - (Laughter) - they should caucus. They should meet and threaten the President with resignation if he does not pick out the bad ones, so that they protect their names, because, I am very disappointed with the President, Mr. Speaker.
If my neighbours complain to me that my children are stealing their cassava, their pawpaws, their what; they keep on complaining to me year in, year out, I keep quiet. What would they think of me really? (Laughter) Really this is too much. The President is too lazy to do his job. I think we should take over and do the job for him. In the 60s, being a Minister was a very big thing. When a Minister visited a district, life in that district was brought to a standstill. Everybody would go to town to see and listen to the Minister. But now, Mr. Speaker, Ministers are like ensenene. (Laughter). You see, the sheer number has sent the value of a Minister tumbling down. They are too many -(Laughter).
MR. PINTO: Point of information. Mr. Speaker, I wish to inform my hon. Colleague that in the part I come from Buganda, ensenene is a delicacy. People spend sleepless night waiting to catch ensenene' and wake up very early in the morning. Now, I wonder whether he will also revise his statement in view of this information. (Laughter).
MR. OKELLO OKELLO: Mr. Speaker, we do not eat Ministers. I was talking about the number. I am not talking about the delicacy.
Tthe second thing that has sent the value of being a Minister down is this graft which actually is theft, not corruption. Really, this thing has made our Ministers a laughing stock among the public. If you mix socially with people, you hear very bad things about Ministers. Actually, if I were the President, I would today just send everybody away and start again. Those whose names appear in this Report really, really my dear Brothers and Sisters, you do not have to wait, protect your name, be kind enough to us and walk out. Actually the President should have sacked you people -(Laughter)- before addressing the donors meeting yesterday. He would have had a lot of courage to talk to the donors. But now he was talking remembering also these things, they are still there - (Laughter). Mr. Speaker, my short point is that really, maybe I worked too long in Government? I do not see why one should sacrifice ones name for being a Minister at the moment? The way I look at it, the way I know, it is nothing. Being a Minister now is nothing unless you use it for your personal purpose. Thank you, Mr. Speaker. (Laughter).
MR. BRUNO PAJOBO (Workers representative): Thank you, Mr. Speaker. When I received this Report, I started thinking why we are not getting minimum wage, why are workers not paid well? Why really? Our professors are paid a peanut, meanwhile, a few groups of people are getting this money for themselves. Now, we have got the answer. But I was also shocked, shocked by the way a certain group of people who are sitting in front try to protect these people. This also poses a question to us, is it true that the Executive is not aware of this corruption? Are they not aware that these people are stealing money? Are they not aware that the money which we have is enough for all Ugandans? Why should we continue begging, begging and then we continue to remove and put in the pockets of individual people? For me, this is a designed system. If you can see the appointment and names of the people who appear, the direction where they come from, it is convenient that they come from one region, one home, one county almost - it is very bad. It is nepotism which is killing this country, they appoint people according to the area. If it comes this way, he will defend here, If it is Transport, you be here. Yes, 'Twalire', you be here. And then at the same time you come and say, pro-privatisation you be there.
One wonders also, these mushrooming companies which have been formed, who are the signatories or who are the executive members of these companies? Maybe, some of them are executive, top, top brass. Sometimes, I say Salim Saleh was sacrificed like Jesus died for others. Maybe he is innocent. Now, this Report as it is, it is for us to test whether my Brothers and Sisters who are sitting in front, the Executive, whether they are serious in fighting corruption. You see, if we are all in the same camp, now if they arrest my friend I may not talk because tomorrow it may be me. That should not be in their minds. That let us protect because you see, this corruption, people have been talking, everybody talks about corruption, corruption, now at the same time they continue going to withdraw, withdraw, where are we ending? Mine you can audit. My stomach you can audit it. Sometimes we are left wondering. When they started privatisation, they said, do not kill the goose which lays the eggs. Now the goose has laid the eggs, the chicks have been hatched, and a few people are taking the chicks. Where is that egg and where is that chick which we will give to the rest of Uganda to test?
It is hard to believe that the top Executive is completely ignorant, whether the people who are given the responsibility to fight corruption are really serious in fighting it. If we are going to fight corruption, when seeing the names the people, the areas they come from, this corruption will remain. By the way, why can we not legalise it so that some Ugandans can have a chance of getting a little? So, we legalise it, it is free.
In Zaire, I am told that they do not say you have stolen, they say you have changed the position. Because once you remove from Bank of Uganda, it goes to Greenland Bank, that is changing the position, you have not stolen. You see, they have just investigated only five or four companies, what about the rest? It is too late for us to wake up. It is really too late. And for this one, the punishment is that you resign. The person resigns, he goes and looks after his cows, in fact, they want enough time to look after their things. Resigning is not a punishment to me for corruption. The best thing is that let us investigate, prosecute these people, recover what they have taken, that will be a little bit fair for us. Now, if you continue to say that let them resign, why cannot so and so resign? He may resign, it is a chance for him to do his business. He has got enough time, maybe you are wasting his time here. So, in my view, this corruption should be handled with an iron hand. I have seen in the Report, for example in Uganda Airlines, the Workers are to be represented on the Executive. But what happens, they do not want to appoint workers there maybe that they have got loud mouths, they will expose them. So, they cannot be appointed on the Board, something which they have agreed to, and refusing them to see the affairs of this.
I wanted to go a bit far that the workers started fighting corruption in this country in Uganda Transport and People's Transport Company. The people we fought in People's Transport Company were transferred to Railways Corporation and continued looting, and workers who pointed them out became victims; up to now they are not paid. Parliament passed a resolution to pay Railway workers, the houses were sold, up to now the workers are not paid and nobody cares whether they will be paid. Houses are gone, they have even sold them, re-sold them, they have got what they want, but what we see is that the gentleman has officially and honourably resigned. No action. Had it been that he is called Pajobo, had it been that a worker who steals a paper, he will be in Luzira, a worker who steals a pen will be in Luzira, a Minister who steals billions is sitting honourably. I fail to understand.
One day I heard from a youth here that they will one day carry stones and throw them, but for us as workers, we will one day refuse to lay the eggs which they are stealing. Because what they are stealing is our sweat. We shall one day come out and boycott and say, we go on strike national wide unless this corruption is fought openly. We may reach that. Because even it maybe too late, the little which is there we should try to recover it from the hands of these people.
Now, I am going back to the Report. After talking about workers not being represented on the Board, it did not in its recommendations mention that let the Minister concerned appoint workers in the Board. It is not there. So, I think at the end the appointment of workers in Uganda Airlines should be in the resolution.
MR. OMONGOLE: Point of information. Mr. Speaker, we could not point that one out specifically because the company was now 100 percent a private company, it did not have government workers any more. Thank you.
MR. PAJOBO: Overall, I think this is a good report. Mr. Speaker, I wanted also to touch a little about UCB. Uganda Commercial Bank is a clear indication that before UCB was privatised, Ugandans stood here and talked and talked. The Executive stood on its feet, and as usual, defeated the good idea of Parliament. If our Executive continues to protect the interests of wrongdoers, then - Mr. Speaker, I was going to tackle the issue of Uganda Commercial Bank. Let me come now to the issue of Privatisation as a whole, because the person responsible for privatisation has just entered, so that it should not be hearsay. Privatisation has been hated by us, by the workers, by the people of Uganda, because it is not for the benefit of Ugandans; and it is a very clear testimony that whatever comes out of privatisation does not help the rest of Ugandans, it is only for a few people. Therefore, we feel that the people should really feel and resign by themselves rather than us to cause them to do so, so that we can get a way of investigating them properly. If we are investigating and they are there, maybe they will interfere. And there are safe houses nowadays, why can we not use these safe houses for these people who are looting this country other than the tax defaulters to be in safe houses?
I want to end by saying that I really support the Report and therefore action should be taken. Thank you very much.
MRS. MARGARET ZZIWA (Woman Representative, Kampala): Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. I rise to support this Report fully and whole heartedly. I thank the Committee for a job well done, I want to add my voice to its. For a very long time I have made so many cries towards this whole process of privatisation, specifically towards the sale of Uganda Commercial Bank. I had to go further to brave and second the hon. Manzi Motion despite the many intimidations which were made.
There are fundamental and pertinent questions which I put up that time, which many Ugandans have been putting, which I am certain that they should be answered irrespective of the direction of this debate. I want to ask the hon. Minister in charge of Privatisation the very questions I put to him the day I visited his office because of the concern I had about the sale of UCB, and because of other concerns I had over Capital Market Authority and many others. The first question was and is, and I still put it across. Was Uganda Commercial Bank not profitable? Was it not making profit? And I beg that the Minister tries to answer these questions. Have the objectives of Uganda Commercial Bank which were the ones by which it was formulated, have they been achieved amongst which was that Uganda Commercial Bank was established in order to assist the Uganda Economy to become fully monetised? That is to reduce a subsistence sector. I can tell you even in the last budget, the quotations were as high as 26 percent in this country. Now, with the sale of Uganda Commercial Bank, what will help in the monetisation of this economy?
The third one was and is, is banking a strategic sector? Why I am asking this is because at one time, at one of the meetings which we had with the hon. Vice President, Her Excellency, we were told that we should give away banking because it is not one of the priorities of the strategic sectors, and somebody had the guts to ask, if we can privatise banking, why do we not privatise Defence or the Army? I feel that we should actually be answered whether the Minister still feels that banking is a strategic sector or not.
I want also to be answered by the hon. Minister in charge of Privatisation, what made the Government to drastically change its position under the PERD Statute before the amendment? Because the classification of the Uganda Commercial Bank then, was in Schedule 2, and that meant that it was not among the immediate to be privatised among others. But what made the Government move so drastically including moving an amendment - moving it from Schedule 2 to Schedule 4 - meaning that it should be immediately and quickly and holly privatised.
May I add another question that, was there no influence of our friends, World Bank and IMF? What of the questions and the pressures saying that, SAP 3 will not be got if we do not approve the selling of Uganda Commercial Bank? What is the position now? In fact I want also to remind the hon. Minister because under those cries, many people drew the examples of Zimbabwe. The Zimbabwean experience whereby the selling or the privatisation process was highly selective and one asks why - in our dear Country of Uganda - why did we have to sell all the 159 parastatals, the whole of them as we have them? Why did we have to do that? And I feel, the hon. Minister, since he is the authority and I think the most knowledgeable in terms of privatization, he should also assist us to answer some of those questions.
In addition to that, I want to request the Minister of Finance, Bank of Uganda officials, and maybe their Public Relations Office, to educate the public what is going on. I have heard many, many Ugandans now turning round and saying that they are witch hunting our people. The other day when I was in one of my small areas in the Constituency, people came up and told me, "even you, the daughter of the soil, Margaret, in your name and tribe and clan of abenkima, how dare you send away the son of the land, Kiggundu, who is also enkima?" For your information, this has gone beyond the obvious known to localise it to become a Kiganda affair and more now a moslem affair, and more so now, enkima affair.
It is very, very, very pathetic because I have also had criticisms which went as early as when ICB was being closed which was saying that you are actually witch hunting Africans. You do not want them in the banking sector. You have gone ahead to close all the banks which are African originated. This is why I am calling upon the Minister responsible to come out and clearly put it out.
Cautiously, I have always answered that may be our banks have not conformed, and maybe the easiest example may have been given in this Report; you have seen how much or how quickly some of these banks have expanded. We know today in this Report that Greenland Bank has now also divested itself into a University. It is already in beach. Even Barclays Bank - one of the oldest banks - went ahead even to close the smallest branch it had near the tax park. It had always relieved the banking. Even Standard Bank and many others which have kept the discipline of banking. May I call upon the Minister responsible to go out and explain.
On the issue of bicupuli, people regard it as witch hunting too. They go ahead to say -(Interruption)
AN HO. MEMBER: Point of information. Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I would like to inform hon. Margaret Zziwa that some of the Banks which were closed, like Trans-Africa Bank and Trust Bank, were not ocal banks for Ugandans. I think they were found not practising very well and that is why they were closed.
Secondly, the ICB was equally closed not because it was a local bank, but because it was actually not performing according to the required standards.
Thirdly, I am sure hon. Margaret Zziwa, when she was standing for elections with Nabagesera, I do not know whether they gave her the votes because she was enkima or because she was an efficient Member of Parliament?
Fourthly, Mr. Speaker, I would like to inform the Speaker on the Floor that I think we should cease to look at this Country through sectarian lenses. Let us address issues squarely. I think in my view, if there was anything wrong with Sulaiman Kiggundu, and he was not actually even taken to prison for whatever had happened, we are still debating the Report; let us have a chance to discuss what the problems with Greenland Bank are. Maybe if there had not been debt collection from UCB, this Greenland Bank would not have been closed. So, let us try to address the issues squarely without being sectarian. I thank you very much.
MRS. ZZIWA: Thank you. I would like to thank the hon. Member for informing me. Except that I think he was slightly absent minded; he did not really get my cause of argument. I was only urging the Minister responsible to bring out all those things. I think the information is not to me, but this information should be clearly tabulated and sent to the PRO of Bank of Uganda, Ministry of Finance, to go on air. I think this is what our public needs to know.
I want also to raise, in fact, just as the Member came in, I want to emphasize the issue of bicupuli, that somebody who draws this bicupuli aspect is mainly theft or a fraud or a stealing or drawing of money from somebody's account without he being the actual payee. What do I mean? If I give a cheque to somebody meaning that I am paying him or her, and he goes to draw that money, through the same system another person fraudulently, goes and draws or picks that cheque from the waste of the bank, he erases whatever is written on and puts on a different payee, puts on a different figure and eventually represents it in the bank, that person is a thief - a clear thief. He is worse than somebody or a burglar who comes to your house and staunch you, and I want the Government to come out very clearly and assist the public in understanding this concept. We should stop treating it as a laughing matter whereby at times they even cautiously say, even ministers do bicupuli. It has been said.
I want also to say that today, if it was possible, in fact I want to thank God because he has enabled us, brief as it may be, to be the very House which is witnessing the turn of this issue of UCB. This should be a lesson to us. But I want to put it on record that we have been highly intimidated and abused. One time, Uganda Confidential came out very very boldly to say that we are lukewarm economists, we people who sit on the Committee of National Economy, and of course it went ahead even to mention names. This is a distinguished Committee, by then being chaired by the whole hon. Manzi Tumubweinee whose academic credentials cannot be challenged, he is a lecturer of Economics who has taught many of those journalists - of course plus many others - I do not want to say, but such issues are very very hurting. I want now to call upon the Press to be brave enough now and come around and join the bandwagon and inform the public. They should fulfil their civic role of educating the public.
I do not want to omit the many other people who have been intimidated also in the process. Many members in the Uganda Commercial Bank - the staff - especially some of those who are holding senior staff positions, were sacked. I know some of them who were sacked just because they imagine them to be blocking the process which they wanted the process of Uganda Commercial Bank to follow. So, I want to call upon the Minister responsible even to look into such issues. There are about three officers whom I know very well who were unjustly terminated.
I do not want also to omit the fact that even some of us - I remember one time I was cautiously in the lobby, and one Minister I may not mention, came and told me, "how dare you, Margaret Zziwa, oppose something which you know very well that His Excellency the President supports?" This is intimidation. I will not mention who, but I want to say that this should be a very very good learning process. I am calling upon the Executive to be able to come out and fulfil its obligation to the public.
As I wind up, Mr. Speaker, I am asking myself and I wish to be assisted by the Attorney General. Under the prevention of Crime Act, 1970, maybe as amended, which advocates that anybody who is found to have wealth over and above what his income is should be made to explain, and finally if he cannot explain, his or her properties to be seized.
I want to move that under that Act, and under the Leadership Code, which of course, is also very clear, the Members mentioned specifically the hon. Ministers, should be - in addition to the recommendations of the Committee - investigated, and if they are found guilty, they should make good of what they have caused this Country to lose.
Finally, as we move into the next referendum, me, Margaret Zziwa, a Movement person, I join many other Movementists to say that this is a sickness; this is individualistic on the particular individuals who have come out to do these acts as individuals. I think I support and I want to say clearly that we are only calling upon the powers there are to take the disciplinary action and we are eagerly waiting for it. I support the Report and the recommendations there in. Thank you.
MR. WACHA: Point of procedure. Mr. Speaker, we have discussed this matter for about two and a half days now. It is now past 4 o'clock. I remember yesterday or the other day, you promised this House that you will give a chance to the persons whose names have been mentioned in this Report to defend themselves. As I listen to more and more insinuations, accusations are being made against these very hon. Members of this House. I have a feeling that if we continue, we might not give them adequate time to put their case to this House. I would therefore suggest very strongly, Sir, that this is now the time that this House should give these people a chance to defend themselves since nothing new is coming.
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: It is true I said that I will give opportunity to people who are mentioned adversely in the Report to say something about the Report, and that is my intention. However, when we started the proceedings today, I only caught the hon. Sam Kutesa, and if he stands, I will definitely give him the opportunity. But at the same time, I will not force any person whose name was mentioned to make a contribution if he does not, because that is his right. So, since I saw hon. Kutesa standing, I will give his an opportunity to contribute.
MR. OMARA ATUBO: But Mr. Speaker, just like a guidance, what is your projection? Do you expect this debate on this important Report to end today or are you thinking otherwise? Because if that is the case, then you may tell us what your thinking from the Chair is about the debate continuing.
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: I will not be in position at this juncture to say whether the debate will end today or not because it may end just now if there is nobody contributing. So, let us see, then I will assess the situation.
THE MINISTER OF STATE FOR PLANNING AND INVESTMENT (Mr. Sam Kutesa): Thank you, Mr. Speaker and hon. Members. I want to start by saying that
I welcome the Report of the Committee and also welcome first the opportunity they granted me to appear before them to answer a number of questions, which I did, as truthfully as is possible and as candidly as I could.
I appeared before the Committee and gave them the information I had to the best of my knowledge, I have now seen and had the opportunity to read their Report, and in their Report there are a number of allegations that are made about me, and I am mentioned by name in that Report. I therefore, welcome this opportunity to respond to the issues raised about me and I shall limit myself only to those areas in discussing this Report. I will also try to go point by point on these issues that are raised about me.
Mr. Speaker and hon. Members, before I go very far, I would like to be allowed to give a brief background to the subject of ENHAS which is the subject that touches me and is mentioned about me in the Report. Civil Aviation Authority by law has powers and jurisdiction over Entebbe International Airport. This includes, but is not limited to Cargo handling, Airport security, Passenger handling, Duty Free Shops and Restaurants.
The Civil Aviation Authority commonly known as CAA had given Cargo Handling to Uganda Airlines Corporation. Unfortunately, over the time, it became very clear that Uganda Airlines Corporation was under capitalised. It did not have enough Aircrafts of its own, instead, it had to lease Aircrafts for its operations, which was of course a very expensive venture. Due to under capitalization of Uganda Airlines, it did not have enough funds to purchase modern equipment to run Cargo Handling on international standards. It is against this background that Civil Aviation Authority decided to invite other companies to participate in Cargo Handling in order to inject more capital and to improve the services at Entebbe Airport.
Consequently, Civil Aviation Authority advertised in the New Vision of 22nd April, 1993, and the advertisement read that: "Civil Aviation Authority is happy to announce that business opportunities will be available in Entebbe International Airport after the completion of the on-going rehabilitation of terminal building." Among the 15 businesses opportunities advertised was Cargo Handling. Swifth Global Airlinks responded by inquiring from the Managing Director of Civil Aviation Authority as the advert stipulated.
It is true, as the Committee has pointed out, that the advert did not have a deadline on which to submit business proposals. Indeed, Global Airlinks responded much later and was accepted by Civil Aviation.
Global Airlinks, as far as I am concerned, much less myself, hon. Sam Kutesa, cannot be held accountable for any anomaly in the tendering procedures, and the Committee does point this out. I did not know however that these procedures were faulty. There was an opportunity, there was an advert. I, as a lawyer then, and a business man, with my company responded to that advert. I think it would be unfair to blame a business man in town for procedures that are elsewhere.
However, the following Companies responded to the advert: they were Uganda Airlines, Global Airlinks, British Airways, Calebs International and Sabena Airlines.
Each of the above companies individually applied to manage Cargo Handling on its own. I for one, on behalf of Global Airlinks applied to manage Ground Handling and I did not expect that I would end up in partnership with others. But because of the small business at Entebbe Airport and other safety considerations, Civil Aviation advised all the applicants to form a consortium, if they so wished. British Airways, Gulf Air declined and the rest of the Companies, including the workers of Civil Aviation and Uganda Airlines Corporation, formed a consortium with the following share-holding:
1. Uganda Airlines was to own 50 per cent.
2. Calebs International was to own 20 per cent.
3. Global Airlinks was to own 20 per cent.
4. Sabena Airlines was to own 5 per cent.
5. The workers of Civil Aviation and Uganda Airlines were to share 5 per cent - each one having 2.5 per cent a piece.
The above Companies formed a consortium called 'Entebbe Handling Services' and that is now called 'ENHAS' - thats for short. Therefore, for me, the formation of ENHAS was not a result of politically influential people. At that time I was neither a Member of Parliament nor was I a Minister. I was a lawyer, a private business man, seeking opportunities like most people do in this Country.
The Committee noted in this Report that Divestiture of Cargo Handling Services was not transparent. I wish to categorically state that Global Airlinks, which is the Company I was associated with responded to the adverts which were in the local media as I have already pointed out. There is no way I could have known about the existence of this business without it having been advertised, and indeed the advert has been supplied as part of the annexes to the Committee's Report.
Mr. Speaker and Colleagues, the Committee accused me also of another issue. This is the issue of being the Chairman of Uganda Airlines when my Company had minority shares. The assumption was that because Uganda Airlines had the majority of shares, therefore, they should have provided the Chairman.
I wish to categorically state that I was elected in accordance with the Articles of Association, and in accordance with the share-holders agreement to become Chairman of the Board on the 26th of October, 1995, in my absence at that Board meeting. I accepted the chairmanship after I came back and attended the meeting and accepted the confidence my colleagues on the Board had put in me.
The Committee in its Report on this issue created the impression that a minority share-holder cannot be chairman to the Board of the Company. I think this impression is incorrect and I would like to say that it is not consistent with what I have known in other places. If you have a company and you are a majority share-holder, you can be a Chairman. But also you can ask someone to be your chairman of the company even if he is not a majority share-holder or in some instances, a share-holder at all. In fact most articles of association do provide for qualifying shares for people to become Chairmen or Directors. In other words, you can have a complete Board that does not have share-holders in it, but they may be required to have qualifying shares. In my case, I was a member of a company that had 20 per cent and I was elected in accordance with the articles of association of ENHAS, and in accordance with the provisions of the share-holders agreement.
Mr. Speaker, I will give you other examples. Maybe hon. Members are aware of Mr. Jack Luyombya. Mr. Jack Luyombya used to be a Member of NRC. Mr. Jack Luyombya is today a Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Madhvani Group. Clearly, Mr. Jack Luyombya is not the biggest share-holder in the Madhvani Group.
A Member of this Committee hon. Alfred Mubanda to my knowledge used to be the Chairman of British American Tobacco in the 60s. I think it is unimaginable that hon. Alfred Mubanda was the biggest share-holder in British American Tobacco. The point I am trying to make is that it is normal practice for a minority share-holder to be a chairman of a Company even when the majority share-holder is represented on the Board.
The point that was raised in the Report, the Committee reported that M/s Bageine and Company valued the assets of Uganda Airlines Corporation at 637,171,000/= shillings, but ENHAS Board refuted some of the equipment and it was reduced by Shs.200,000,000/=. I wish to inform this House that this is true. It is true that some of the machinery which had been valued by M/s Bageine and Company was found to be obsolete, and the Board sat together with all the Directors of Uganda Airlines, and we looked at each piece of equipment which had been found to be obsolete and also took the value that had been indicated on that property in the valuation Report of Bageine and Company, and it is those values that were deducted and brought down by the figure I have just mentioned.
So, I am saying that the equipment was obsolete, and when it was valued and we started working it, we found that some of this equipment indeed was the equipment that was left over from the days of East African Airways.
The Committee also in its Report pointed out that despite the fact that Uganda Airlines continued to provide services until April, 1996, when it finally handed over to ENHAS, it paid its revenues to ENHAS. Once again this fact is true. The position was ENHAS took over Cargo Handling from the beginning of March. When the arranged agreements were signed in 1996, Uganda Airlines requested that they would want to have an orderly withdraw and also to enable ENHAS to recruit staff to take over the running of the Ground Handling.
Indeed most of the workers that became staff of ENHAS were being recruited from the former handling wing of Uganda Airlines. What is also true is that in that month when Uganda Airlines conducted the handling at Entebbe Airport, it was agreed that Uganda Airlines charge all its operational costs for that month and retain those operational costs on the income of ENHAS, and that was done, and the balance from the operational costs was shared prorata among the share-holders in accordance with their share holdings.
Uganda Airlines continued for that month. It was reimbursed for its operational expenses and the balance of the money which was the income came to the Company and remained a property of the company prorata to the shares as we held them. It is therefore logical that the revenue of that month which was passed on by ENHAS should have been shared with Uganda Airlines Corporation. So, that is my answer to that finding of the Committee.
It has been said that I have used political influence to acquire the shares in ENHAS in this Report. This is not true. By the time, as I said, I acquired shares in ENHAS in February, 1996, I was not a Minister, neither was I a Member of Parliament. I was a lawyer practising law and some business in Kampala. The facts are there for any one to see, there is therefore no way I could have used political office to influence a position of my shares in ENHAS.
The Committee in the Report also pointed out that I arrogantly denied the workers shares in ENHAS. I want to clarify on this matter.
Early in 1996, the Civil Aviation Authority directed all the share-holders to pay for their shares by 28th February, 1996. Uganda Airlines paid through valuation of its equipment, as I have said, and all the other share-holders, save for the workers, paid before the deadline.
Consequently, after one and a half years, Uganda Airlines and Civil Authority workers wanted to pay for their shares. But they insisted that they would pay at the same rate as the share-holders who had paid nearly one and a half years before.
The Board rejected this proposal because the value of the shares had appreciated upwards. Subsequently, the workers of Civil Aviation paid for their shares at the new market price. The shares of Uganda Airlines, as I speak now, for Uganda Airlines workers are available, if only they can pay the price their colleagues, the workers of Civil Aviation, paid. I want to point out that ENHAS has never in any way shown any form of arrogance to Uganda Airlines workers. We have only asked them to pay for their shares at the market price.
I just want to explain a little here. If I was to agree with hon. Kanyike that this month we start a company and each one of us will contribute shs.100,000/=; and if hon. Kanyike contributed his Shs.100,000/= and I did not, and he runs the business for one and a half years, and I come after one and a half years and I say, "hon. Kanyike, you recall our agreement. I am now ready to pay my Shs.100,000/=", surely I think hon. Kanyike will say, "well Shs.100,000/= was right then. But now I still accept you in my Company, but do pay the value of the shares of my Company now", and that is really the position in which we find ourselves.
The Committee in their Report wondered why Government decided to divest Uganda Airlines Shares in ENHAS, and why the offer was given to us - the other share-holders. Uganda Airlines Corporation as a Company had financial constraints. Government took a decision to the effect in order for Uganda Airlines Corporation to pay off some of its indebtedness, its shares in ENHAS had to be sold. Otherwise Uganda Airlines Corporation was draining the Privatisation Unit which was meeting some of its financial obligations.
In law, there is what we call, 'the first right of refusa'" or what is also commonly known as 'preemptive right'. This is when a share-holder wants to sell his or her shares, the first opportunity is given to the other share-holders. It is only after the share-holders have failed to pay for the floated shares that an opportunity is given to the owner of those shares to sell them outside.
Government has already done similar things, similar divestitures, for example, the shares in Barclays Bank, the shares in Bank of Baroda where Government was a share-holder and they had such preemptive right. In our case, both our articles of association and also the share-holder's agreement did contain these provisions as the Committee points out in its Report.
The Committee in its Report also points out that the 50 per cent of the Uganda Airlines Corporation shares were under valued, giving an impression that if this were to be true, we at ENHAS had a hand in it. May I inform this august House that in privatisation, evaluation is not done by the buyer. It is the responsibility of the seller in this case Uganda Airlines and the Privatisation Unit. However, let me shed some light on this issue.
The Privatisation Unit appointed three international Firms to value the shares of ENHAS before it could sell the 50 per cent shares of Uganda Airlines Corporation. We at ENHAS at that time did not know any of the firms that had been appointed to do this evaluation, but I have now found out from the Report that these included Ernst & Young, DFCU and Delloitte & Touche. The Report also indicates that PU carried out their independent valuation which was more or less as the same as of that Delloitte & Touche which had valued the shares between 3.375 million and 4.856 million. Apparently, it was the value of Delloitte & Touche which was the lowest that was believed mainly, because this company was an audit firm also among other companies for ENHAS. I do not know whether the reason they believed the valuation of Delloitte & Touche was because they found that Delloitte & Touche knew more about ENHAS than any other of the audit firms. However, this is an international firm and I believe that anybody should check on their credentials and find out why they arrived at that price. Initially, we at ENHAS, our offer was to pay US Dollars 30,000 per percentage share. The Privatisation rejected this and were asking for 90,000 US Dollars per percentage share. We raised up our offer to 50,000 which was also rejected. Eventually, the Privatisation Unit told us that if we did not pay 70,000 US dollars per percentage share then they would look outside the company to offer this opportunity to other non members of the company. We felt that we had to take this offer at 75,000 US Dollars per percentage share and in the end we paid 3,750,000 which was the agreed price for these shares.
Let me also hasten to add that one of our share-holders, M/s Sabena Airlines, which is an international company rejected this price as too high and accordingly refused to participate in the buying of the 50 percent. I want to place categorically on the record of this House that I, Sam Kutesa, did not in any way, whether by omission or commission, influence the valuation of ENHAS, I did not talk to any of the firms that were commissioned by PU either to increase or lessen the value of these shares, and I stated this both to the Committee on oath and I repeat it for the record of this House.
The Committee in their report kept on referring about politically important families. I do not know what this means. I do not know whether it is also in reference to me, but I have heard in the corridors that some people have been referring to me as belonging to one of those politically important families, just because my wife Jennifer is a cousin to the first lady, Mrs. Janet Museveni. Well, I want to state that this has been so since I married her on 3rd August,1974, I want it to be on record that this relationship between my family and that of the President which was never planned, because I did not know that he would become President, has never clouded either the President's political views or my own views, and in fact, at some point in time, we have had diametrically opposed views politically. May I also add that I have never ben helped by the President to do any business, I would like to place this on record.
Mr. Speaker, fellow MPs, just by way of ending, I want to reiterate what the Attorney General said here yesterday, that it is unfair for Parliament to blame someone who cannot come here and defend himself. I happen to be a Minister of State in the Ministry of Finance and I would like to call upon Parliament not to castigate Mr. Tumusiime Mutebire who is a Permanent Secretary in that Ministry without him being heard.
Lastly, Mr. Speaker, the Committee in its wisdom recommended that I should be brought to book in its final recommendation. I have presented the factors as I know them to you hon. Members, and I am sure you Members of this House will dispense justice. You should be the ones to say whether he deserves to be brought to book and over what? I want to say one thing though, that maybe, what may still be bothering people is that I am both Chairman of ENHAS and also a Minister of State for Finance. There may be a feeling that these two positions may constitute or would probably constitute a conflict of interest. In my own opinion I have regarded ENHAS as a private limited liability company and I have regarded it so not withstanding that Uganda Airlines was a 50 percent shareholder, my view was that it was an investment where a company called Uganda Airlines Corporations invested its funds, just like my company invested, and I thought in my view that there would be no conflict of interest because I believe hon. Members here still chair companies or are directors in companies but sometimes do business with Government. This was my interpretation. If it was a lapse of good judgement I take full responsibility for that, but otherwise I believe fully that my judgement and my thinking was that like all of us here who own companies are directors in them and are chairmen of those companies, sometimes would continue to becChairmen and continue to be entitled to chair those companies. I was just thinking to myself; we have just had a new Member joining us, who is also the Managing Editor of Crusader, I am wondering whether from the beginning of his entry into this House, he is going to stop taking advertisements, he is going to stop doing business with Crusader, or he is going to stop being the chairman of it.
This is my reaction to the Committee report. I hope that hon. Members will take it in the spirit it has been given because it is candid and it is the truth as I know it. I thank you.
THE MINISTER OF WORKS, HOUSING AND COMMUNICATIONS (Mr. John Nasasira): Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. I am in a bit of a dilemma. I was on leave when this report was presented to this House. I came back last night. I have just read the report. I would like to clear my name because it was mentioned in the report, but I thought I would have an opportunity for today and tomorrow to prepare my clearance with the necessary facts and recommendations; and I had assumed that because of the importance of this report and the subject, there would be more Members who would be contributing so that when the House resumes, I am ready to present myself. I leave this to the judgement of the Speaker if there were more people to contribute, otherwise, I could do it, but I thought I will not treat it the way I wanted to treat it. I just need your guidance on this, Mr. Speaker.
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: Yes, I am considering it because you see, I agree, you told us you have not been here, but there are others who have been here. Meanwhile, I will be thinking as to what to do to your case. So, maybe, we can hear from those who are prepared, if any.(Interjections)- you see, hon. Nasasira, it does not mean that I have not understood your case, but the others who are here, what are they saying?
MR. KIVEJINJA KIRUNDA (Bugweri County, Iganga): Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. I would first of all thank the Committee for this report; it has been exhaustive and I think it is one of the reports which the House is discussing in a sober way. The House has been able to listen to every contributor, including those accused, a culture which we had not yet developed at an earlier stage. I am particularly standing, specifically to answer the innuendo in the report about me, because I am not specifically mentioned in the report. But, there was innuendo by the Chairman when he read on page 21 that, " The Committee noted with concern that although the PERD Statute came into force in September 1993, CAA's parallel process of privatising key parts of UAC went on until 1996. PU eventually took over management of UAC in 1977. The Committee finds that the Minister of works, Transport and Communications acted in contravention of section 3, 6 and 28(2) of the PERD Statute by assuming the power of 'restructuring a public enterprise'... ", and when somebody asked who was the Minister, he said "It was K.K". So for purposes of record I want this one to be clarified that as the Minister then I was the one who ceremonised the wedding of the ENHAS venture. I am the one who ceremonised, I bear the responsibility.
Now, what I did was not a contravention of the PERD Statute, but a management effort as the head of the administration at the Ministry of Works and Transport. There was an outcry of tremendous amount of goods at the Airport which were not being cleared and the delay in the flights because there was no capacity to handle the goods that were either being exported or imported. This was counter to the Government effort of trying to hurry the exports out and clear the imports out of the Airport. I took a visit to the Airport and I found that almost half the apron was full of goods and that quite a number of exporters had even lost out,especially, the horticulture exporters had their products completely gone bad, because they could not be able to get ground handling to take their products to the markets abroad. So, as the manager I asked the people concerned what were the problems. I asked the CAA and the Uganda Airlines. They said the problems were because of incapacity of the ground handling facilities, and I asked, "Who does it?" They said,"It is the Uganda Airlines." "What capacity does Uganda Airlines have?" They did not have enough capacity to handle. I said, "Can we not even at this time be able to attract some fellows to come and be able to assist us to clear these goods off the apron?" They said, "Okay, we shall put up an advertisement." So I caused that advertisement to be put up. And then I said, when you process; you tell me because I want to be in the know, I was in charge I did not want things behind my back.
So, one morning they came up with now hon. Kutesa at the head of the column with another European, with the CA Director with Mr. Mutyaba who is now a Member of Parliament and they said, "We have found a solution to your problem. We have found here people who are prepared to pump in money so that we are able to get more equipments on the ground and be able to facilitate the handling of cargo at the terminal." So, I said "Okay, can you put out your cards?" They said okay. They proposed a number of options. The General Manager of CAA said, "These people are prepared to put in 3 million dollars." They confirmed that they were prepared to put in 3 million dollars as their contribution to the joint venture; we only disagreed on the share holding. In that meeting, the CAA wanted also to be a partner in that company and I ruled that if you are going to be the umpires, you should not be partners and after all you do not do any job in the ground handling; the job is done by the Uganda Airlines, so let the people who do the job own the company, they will be stakeholder and will be able to take care of their interests. Of course, I had the knowledge that of all the jobs at the Airport, the most lucrative job is ground handling. That is why even in the previous regime, it could not be left to any other person but Muwanga's family! So, I knew exactly that -(Laughter)- just hold on. I knew that people would want to put their hand there -(Interruption)
MR. NYAI: Point of order. Mr. Speaker, the regime from which the Movement Government inherited power, I happened to have been a Director of Uganda Airlines and I recall very clearly that ground handling at Entebbe Airport was done by a company which was a subsidiary of Uganda Airlines Corporation. Can the former Minister of Transport who is here accusing and dragging the name of a deceased person, name here and now who from Muwanga's family was in charge of that ground handling at Entebbe Airport. If he cannot name such a person is he in order, Mr. Speaker?
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: I think you are seeking clarification from the Member to what he is really saying, could you please clarify.
MR. BAKKABULINDI: Point of Clarification. Can I seek clarification, Mr. Speaker on what he has just expressed.
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: On the same issue?
MR. BAKKABULINDI: Yes.
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: Why do you not allow him to -
MR. BAKKABULINDI: Mr. Speaker, with due respect this is a very important issue we have been moved from one state to another one without understanding what took place or transpired in between; that is why I am seeking clarification so that we can understand him properly.
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: So you will answer the three hon. Members.
MR. BAKKABULINDI: Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. As a Member of that Committee, I would like to seek clarification from hon. K.K from the time he went to the Airport and found the place was loaded, he wanted things to be moved as a good manager, then the following time he saw hon. Kutesa, hon. Mutyaba, the CA coming to his office with a viable solution; can he tell us in between how the tendering was done so that we can see how hon. Kutesa came to reach his office in a proper order.
MR. MUTYABA: Point of information. Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and I thank the member for giving way. First of all, I want to give information on a point which was raised by hon. Dick Nyai. It is true that at one time a company called Posts Cargo which was owned by the family of Paul Muwanga was granted a concession to run ground handling at Entebbe. This concession was taken over by the Government when there was a change over and the equipment was given to Uganda Airlines. In fact, out of that arose a case which was brought by Muwanga's family against the Uganda Government. I am saying this because Uganda Airlines was the second defendant, and that time I was the corporation Secretary. I did link up with the Attorney General in order to see how we could solve this case. So, what hon. Kirunda Kivejinja is saying is true, however, as I was coming, I heard the hon. Kirunda Kivejinja saying that I had gone to his office to say that these are good people.
MR. KIRUNDA KIVEJINJA: Mr. Speaker, I think with that explanation,my case is resolved, except for the clarification sought by my hon. Member representing the Workers.
MR. WACHA: Point of information. Thank you, Sir. Mr. Speaker, hon. Kirunda made a statement which I think has some definite bearing to some findings of the report of the Committee. He says ground handling at Entebbe is most lucrative and that is why even in the previous regime it could not be left to any other family but that of Muwanga -(Laughter). Mr. Speaker, can I find out from hon. Kirunda Kivejinja where this matter found the background to his granting this concession to people who came to his office like hon. Kutesa etcetera.
MR. KIRUNDA KIVEJINJA: I thank the hon. Members for the seeking of clarification. I will first of all clarify the hon. Member representing the Workers, that first of all, the questions you were putting to me I was the head of the Political Authority and no Minister - a good Minister at least involves himself into the technicalities which is a bureaucratic job. So, for me they gave me the final policy options and consequences for each of them. Having adopted what I thought to be the best option, my job was to ask, "Was it done correctly? Has the Attorney General accepted?" Having answered these questions, I confirm the decision among the option given in front of me.
Now, to the other clarification sought, all I can say is that we are more than 200 people in this room and we comprehend issues differently, if my colleague comprehends that way, it is his freedom, but I would like him to take my statement as I have made it.
At the end of the day, when we had that meeting, my only emphasis was that because the ground handling at that material time was contributing tremendously towards the earnings of the Uganda Airlines, because as I told you, there is more money in the ground handling than even in the flights; and because UAC had even done very well since the new management took over and used their earnings from ground handdling to liquidate a good part of the traditional debt which had accumulated, it was my interest to ensure that the Uganda Airlines continue having a share into the ground handling. Therefore, I said in the new group 50 percent share must be owned by the Uganda Airlines. This was on condition that the incoming partners pump in 3 million dollars. That was the agreement. What happened after that, whether they brought in the 3 million dollars is not my concern, as I had left the ministry. I wanted that one to be clarified, that what the report is addressing was after I had left.
MR. ONGOM: Point of clarification. Mr. Speaker, I wanted clarification from the hon. Member who stood up to clear his name, because before we decide whether he is guilty as accused we have got to be clarified in our minds. The Minister by the time he got interested in correcting the mistakes at the Airport must have known at that time - at that time the PERD Statute had already been passed and that ground handling was part and parcel of Uganda Airlines property and interest and that Uganda Airline was a parastatal which was also scheduled for privatisation either partly or wholly. Now, he is being accused in the report of hijacking the responsibility of PU. Was he aware at that time that actually Uganda Airline as the Minister was also one of the scheduled companies for privatisation, and therefore, according to the statute if you are going to divest any part of it PU must be involved, was he aware and did he involve PU? I would like this clarification.
MISS. BYANYIMA: Point of information. While we were conducting our investigation we discovered that the hon. Kirunda Kivejinja did think out and write out very clear guidelines on how the ground handling assets of Uganda Airlines should be divested and how the consortium should come in place. But we discovered through the minutes of the ENHAS board that actually the new partners of Uganda Airlines in the consortium sat and agreed that the guidelines did not suit them and actually minuted that they were going to shape these guidelines. In fact, for us we feel that the guilt of hon. Kirunda Kivejinja was to be overwhelmed by politically powerful people, not that he lacked the intention of protecting Uganda Airlines.
MR. KIRUNDA KIVEJINJA: Well, as to whether it was overwhelmed, that must have been after my departure -(Laughter). But, all I want to emphasize is that I was not privatising a company, it was only making an arrangement to attend to a problem on the ground. The ENHAS was a consortium to solve a problem. I even asked some fellows whether they could get private clearers with godowns in Entebbe to come and clear plane by plane as they land, so that they remove the cargo from the Airport. That was not a question of setting up a company and divesting it. The goods were covering half the apron, and as a Manager, I had to ask myself what to do. I did the right thing and goods begun moving.
MR. MUTYABA: Point of information. Thank you, Mr. Speaker. For the sake of hon. K.K. I want to give information to this House. Although afterwards we parted company, but on the issue of ground handling, I remember I went to his office and I was against Civil Aviation owning 10 per cent in the ground handling, because it was a regulator and he agreed with me. In fact, he insisted that this 10 per cent should be given to Uganda Airlines; at least, that one, I can speak for him.
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: Okay, that is the end of hon. Kivejinja's statement on the matter. Are we hearing from any other people mentioned?
THE MINISTER OF STATE FOR FINANCE IN CHARGE OF PRIVATISATION (Mr. M. Rukikaire): Mr. Speaker, I have spent the whole of yesterday afternoon and this morning consulting my colleagues about the text of the report from the Select Committee, and the appropriate response it should be given and I would like to beg the indulgence of the Speaker, that this information is still being prepared and is not ready now. I am preparing the information which I hope to put in one single document, and I want to make sure that every Member of this House has a copy of our response to the Select Committee's report. So, I want to ask for your indulgence, Mr. Speaker, that I be allowed to give my response at the next seating of Parliament. I thank you. Well, if it is the wish of the House that it should be tomorrow, yes, Sir, I am prepared to be ready tomorrow, but I will leave it to the Speaker to decide how he would like to accommodate my request. I thank you.
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: Can we hear from hon. Mayanja Nkangi, Minister of Justice?
THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE & CONSTITUTIONAL AFFAIRS (Mr. Mayanja Nkangi): Thank you Mr. Speaker and hon. Members. First, I apologise to you all for my voice which is, as you know, most of the time is hopeless, but now it is worse because of a cold. would much rather if I could, address this House without any notes, because I would enjoy that most, and I think I would be more direct. However, this document is a very vital statement of policy, a critique of an important policy of Government. For that reason, I want the facts about everything to come out first and then, basing on those facts, I do not have to repeat them, I make my own answers.
Second, yesterday afternoon, Sir, I went to the Clerk to Parliament, and he gave me this 60 page document. I came straight here to Parliament, I left about 7.00 p.m. This morning, we had a cabinet meeting until about 1.00 p.m. At 2.00 p.m. I was here. I had about two or three hours last night to read part of it. So, I have not even finished reading it. So, in order for me to be able to answer, to inform this august House properly, as you have said, since May I have been Minister of Justice, away from the precincts of the Ministry of Finance, no direct contacts; so I need figures and facts from that Ministry, if you allow me, before I can actually address this House.
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: Now, hon. Members, the names mentioned in report of people capable of being in this House and putting their case are only hon. Nasasira, hon. Rukikaire, and hon. Mayanja Nkangi. They have indicated to you that they have a problem, they want to present their report in a better way than just talking off-cuff - this is their case. I did not say we are adjourning to Tuesday, we could adjourn to tomorrow, I do not know, but in view of the inability of the adversely mentioned in the report, I would say that let us see whether there are other members who want to contribute, then I will make a decision at the end of their contribution.
MR. PASCAL MUKASA (Nakaseke County, Luwero): Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I would like to add my gratitude to the Select Committee for the comprehensive work they have brought before this House. The information in this document has gone far and wide across this country, and we have been asked questions, and I could summarise the reaction that I have received, from especially my constituents, in the words that there seems to be tremendous disbelief of what they hear. They asked me, is it really, possible that this could happen? My answer has been objective. What I have read in the report is what they have read or heard about, but I also support the right of the people to respond, those mentioned in the report, and consequently, I would like to appreciate the response by the hon. Minister of Finance for Planning and others who will come forward with their specific statements.
The other reaction that I got, especially from the people in my part of the world, Nakaseke, and Luwero in general, is amazement that it is now that Parliament seems to be waking up to what seems to have been all along happening in this country. They gave me a specific example. We are said in Luwero to have received US $68 million after the war to help us rehabilitate Luwero, and I must say, the question in all our minds is, where is that money? Where did it go? Who ate it? Because the targeted beneficiaries did not receive that money. Yes, I am not saying it in order to justify that there should be further preference as might be indicated in the report. What I am trying to say, Mr. Speaker, is that, there seems to be a history of taking away money given for various projects or for various endeavours in this country, that has gone unaccounted for. We, the people of Luwero, would like this same Select Committee or the august House to address the issue of where the US $68 million that was given to the people of Luwero for the war went. It would help to fill up this very sad chapter that we are addressing, where certain objectives - (Interruption)
MISS. NANKABIRWA SENTAMU: Point of information. Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker, and I would like to thank the hon. Member for Nakaseke who is also the Treasurer, Luwero Triangle War Veteran Association. Earlier on, I told the House that the report which dealt with the issue of the emergency relief fund for Luwero Triangle was completed, was submitted to Cabinet and Cabinet took a decision and directed the IGG to look into that matter conclusively; and when the Committee of Parliament was handling the report of the Office of the President and Prime Minister, the Committee wanted this report, and the Minister in charge of Luwero Triangle took just 12 hours to present the report to the Committee. Right now, that report is with the Committee, under the chairmanship of hon. Sarah Kiyingi Namusoke, and the Minister is eagerly waiting for the resolutions from that report to take action. Hon. Member for Nakaseke, I am urging you to liaise with the Committee, to sit down and really go through the report, so that you can assist the people of Luwero Triangle and carry out that post mortem which may prevent other people from dying from the same cause. I thank you.
MR. MUKASA: Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. I wish to thank the Minister of State for Luwero Triangle for the information she has provided, because I was not aware that the Cabinet report has been submitted to the Parliamentary Committee. I just want to fore warn Parliament that money came into the country and has never been accounted for, at least, to the satisfaction of the people who we presume to have benefitted from this - (Interruption)
MR. NYAI: Point of procedure. Mr. Speaker, we are trying to reach a determination on a report by the Select Committee of this House, which was nominated by you and confirmed by this House. There is nothing in that report which touches Nakaseke or Luwero Triangle. So, Mr. Speaker, is it procedurally correct to take the time of this House to deal in irrelevancies, Mr. Speaker?
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: You are suggesting this is out of focus? I think he just brought in just as an illustration of the point he was trying to make, but otherwise, it is not the substance of this Motion. Would you please direct yourself to the Motion? The matter before the House is privatisation and how it has been handled.
MR. MUKASA: I thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. Frankly, if we are going to fragment our outlook on the situation we are looking at, then we have a problem. All I have told this House, and I hope the House appreciates, there is a history of failure to account for funds destined for various purposes, and I gave the Luwero Triangle money as an illustration. I could give many more examples. For instance, we have dealt with another example that is coming before this House to do with the National Social Security Fund, where again, we will find very similar patterns that this House will have to address. So, I think it is not procedurally wrong to - (Interjection)
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: You can give one example but direct yourself to -
MR. MUKASA: Going back to the specific report of the Committee, as I said, I am fully in support of the work they have carried out. I hope that it will be answered by those Members on which it reflects so that we have a full picture in order to take appropriate action on the recommendations; but I wanted to single out one person named in the report and maybe share some sentiments that I have gathered from my people with the House, and this is the issue of Maj. Salim Saleh and UCB.
About a couple of days ago, there was a story in the papers, asking: 'Is Salim Saleh the Robin Hood of Uganda?' Now, for those who might have forgotten the story of Robin Hood, Robin Hood was a gangster, a thief or a fellow who used to rob the rich in order to give to the poor, and he did this and it is written on and you read it as you learn English, but suddenly, we are being asked whether Salim Saleh is the Robin Hood of Uganda. I want to say on behalf of the people of Nakaseke, that at least, Salim Saleh has demonstrated something I know of no other who has done it. About two weeks ago, Mr. Speaker, Salim Saleh gave a loan of Shs.130 million - he did not say whether it was from UCB or Greenland or any of the places, but I just want to show you the magnanimity of this man who took whatever he had, Shs. 130 million, and gave it to a muluka or a parish in one of my sub-counties. It is a sub parish called 'Mpwede' and he said, "Let them go and loan this money out to the farmers to re-plant coffee", which as you know, used to be a major coffee place and a lot of the coffee fell out from the NRM struggle, the money - (Interruption)
MR. MUTYABA: Point of information. I thank the member for giving way, and I would like to give him this information. That in the story of Robin Hood which he is referring to, Robin Hood would steal and give free of charge to the poor. That is the information I want to give. He was not giving loans, he would give free of charge.
MR. DOMBO: Point of information. Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. The information I want to give to the hon. Member is that the effect of this report is to wonder about the conduct of Salim Saleh and his groups. That Salim Saleh 12 years, who could go through the bushes of Luwero barefooted and with no money, and while the Government of Uganda has failed to loan money to the people of Luwero, an individual can do it. Where has he got this money? That is the context of this report and what we want to find out, Mr. Speaker.
MR. MUKASA: Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. Clearly, this shows that the point is getting across. The people - (Interruption)
MISS. KIYINGI NAMUSOKE: Point of clarification. Mr. Speaker, I am getting so uncomfortable and I really hope my brother will give me clarification. Is he saying that the people of Nakaseke do not mind if somebody steals their money and then loans it to them, because, here we are with a report and what has come out is that Maj. General Salim Saleh is alleged to have behaved in an irregular manner in relation to UCB and therefore, the people's money. At the same time and maybe by coincidence, he has also loaned to the people of Nakaseke. In my simple mind, I have to connect that Nakaseke money with UCB money. Is the hon. Member now telling us that the people of Nakaseke will not mind to be loaned, moreover with interest, money that has been stolen from them; that they are happy that somebody has stolen from them and is now giving them? Is that what the hon. Member is telling us? I seek that clarification.
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: I think hon. Members, my understanding of his contribution is a mitigating factor. He is just saying, it is true, it may be true, assuming it is true that this money was taken by Maj. Gen. Salim Saleh, at least it is benefitting the people of his area. So, it is a mitigating factor.
MR. MUKASA: Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. All I can say to the hon. House is, when I started, I pointed out that at one time, we got a genuine US $68 million which did not come to Luwero; then suddenly, recently, after a lot of effort, Mr. Speaker - I could also remind you that in the budget which we just passed a month ago, we provided Shs.119 million for the office of the Minister of State for Luwero Triangle, it is barely enough and we have to pay for salaries for that office and nothing is left to go to the area. Suddenly, Maj. Gen. Salim Saleh comes up with Shs.130 million and says he is going to loan it to these people who had nowhere to borrow from, Mr. Speaker - (Interruption)
MISS. WINNIE BYANYIMA: Point of clarification. Thank you Mr. Speaker and hon. Mukasa for giving way. I am seeking clarification about the people of Luwero and this loan of Shs. 130 million. Our report shows that at least, Shs. 30,000 million was taken out of UCB, Shs. 30 billion Members, is the same as Shs.30,000 million. Mr. Speaker, I still know my arithmetic. Shs. 30,000 million was taken out of UCB in the last few months and given to Greenland related companies or Greenland Investment Limited companies. Now, I want ask about the people of Luwero, surely, this Shs. 130 million out of a total of Shs. 30,000 million is this not really like loose change. Can they not negotiate for a better cut from that one? Surely, I run an NGO which can give them negotiation skills to do better than that.
MR. MUKASA: Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. I wish to thank the Members for the information provided. The question has been put that out of the billions of shillings taken out of UCB and given to Greenland Bank and related organisations, do we not see this as pittance, as mere change? Of course, the answer is yes. But for heaven's sake, where have we ever had pittance from anybody except Salim Saleh. Therefore, I am appealing to everybody, for heaven's sake, throw those pittances to us, we will take it, we need it. We almost had it at the end of the war, it never came. So, let us have it now, I am not excusing Salim Saleh because the gist of the report is to find whether he did any wrongdoing or not. All I was saying is that, in his publicised statements, he has said that he wanted to convert his business to assist, do exactly what he has started to do in Nakaseke now. I would be failing if I did not applaud this sentiment, this magnanimity that I have not seen demonstrated by anybody towards the people who brought us here. These people fought for the very peace, prosperity we are enjoying but they get very little. They fought, and I believe, deserve to be considered to have things brought back to them, Mr. Speaker. (Interruption)
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Members, I think with due respect, you should be fair to him. Hon. Salim Saleh is not a member of this House and therefore, he cannot respond to what was said about him in the report. So, if you find somebody who says something in mitigation, I think it should be fair for this House to listen, and then, at the end of the day, you make your decision. Please, conclude.
MR. PINTO: Point of information. This is simple information about a saying of Peter and Paul. The saying goes, 'he who steals from Peter to pay Paul will always be grateful to Paul'.
MR. MUKASA: Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. I am obviously ignorant of what that statement means, but what I would like to say sincerely is, I am appealing to a spirit that has been demonstrated lately; and as it happens that simultaneously, with the time that we are looking at certain possible wrong doing in certain areas, I thought if this money came from UCB by wrongful means, then obviously, we will find out. All I was saying is that, somehow, whichever way this money was obtained, money has found its way to assist on a very important matter in the village. I say this for clarity, Mr. Speaker.
Now, in trying to conclude, it is very clear that the report reveals various things that are wrong maybe with the whole structure. I see in some respects things you could attribute to incompetence of the people that we trusted to handle issues, I see some aspects as given to us that show gross negligence, Mr. Speaker. I also have seen - (Interruption)
DR. OKULO EPAK: Point of clarification. I thank you Mr. Speaker and I thank my hon. old boy for giving way. Since he appreciate the Robbin Hood way of doing things, would it be fair to say that the US $68 million of the Luwero Triangle was fleeced in order to feed some orphans and therefore, it was in order?
MR. MUKASA: Thank you very much and I am grateful for that question and the answer is simple. All I am saying, let us find out which orphans, where those orphans are that were fed with that 68 million and that will mitigate the lack of knowledge currently held by the people of Luwero; we did not see it come to Luwero, and we do not know where it went to feed the orphans, Mr. Speaker. Consequently, I think it is imperative on us to find out where that money went. If it went to feed orphans, for heaven's sake, let us know who and let us put it clearly.
I was saying that the report has revealed that there has been a lot of what I could call incompetence, a lot of negligence, because I asked a question that still stands today. I trust the Attorney General completely, and especially, when he gives us his assurance that he did everything possible to ensure that the UCB transaction was properly conducted. But I ask him, as a point of information, how comes the offer was from one Westmont company and the agreement is concluded with something called Westmont Land Asia, I must say that it went unanswered. To me, either there was incompetence or negligence on failing to detect this sort of thing or both, or there could be a worse one which could have been put across, there could be corruption at some level that deliberately may seem possible. Whatever it is, I am hoping that through this exchange of views, through the answers that we are receiving from the key parties and so forth, we are going to be the wiser, and it is in that light that I would like to say that the recommendations of the Committee are supportable to the extent that they will remain so when we have heard all the answers. Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker.
MR. MAO NOBERT ( Gulu Municipality, Gulu): I thank you, Mr. Speaker. I join the other Members in thanking the Committee for a good report. This Report should not be trivialised. It is a serious Report and we who speak Luo would say it is scratching where Uganda is itching.
The Omongole Report is a true Ugandan Report written in a Ugandan spirit. In Uganda these days thieves are undressed and this Report has also undressed some suspects and we can see the nakedness. This Report is actually about the nakedness of some of our people. The import of the Report is a vote of no confidence in the entire privatisation process, Page three says the objectives were not achieved, the Report also says the Privatisation Unit colluded with individuals for gain disregarding the Law, it lacked transparency, it exercised partiality and there was political influence peddling. But more importantly, the Report says the whole process was not even patriotic. In other words, all those who were key players behaved as if they were expatriates in another country.
This Parliament has now become known for debating two issues, war and corruption. When we are not debating war, we are debating corruption, and I think the two are about to be interlinked. Uganda has been the darling of donors, and some are in this country debating what more they can do for us and other African countries. We won serious debt relief recently because of our good record, but now due to the corruption at high levels, we are squandering the goodwill that we enjoy with international donors and multi-lateral organisations as if we are not a poor country. This mentality of living first world life styles on a third world economy, in my view, is what is killing us.
I have read a Transparency International Report which listed Uganda as the 15th most corrupt country in the world out of 85 countries they studied. In this donors meeting, Uganda has requested for three billion US dollars - (Interruption) - Mr. Speaker, I am quoting the Transparency International Report authoritatively and I do not need any more information. We have requested three billion dollars over the next three years, I do not see us getting it if this is the way we spend money.
The whole Privatisation exercise has become a game of ping-pong and each enterprise is a ball in this game. UCB has become the biggest and most attractive ball in this game and it drew giants, the likes of Maj.Gen. Salim Saleh. Maj. Gen. Salim Saleh confessed to under the table dealings, he lied about it, he was exposed, he was caught with his finger in our jar, then he resigned. He claimed he had been previously forgiven in another deal relating to helicopters which could not fly. I question the Maj. General's motives on these grounds, if he says he was nationalistic, why did he not advocate for UCB to remain a fully Government owned company so that it is owned by all of us other than a few if he really wanted it to remain here?
Two, in my view, the worst type of corruption is the use of political patronage and influence to loot assets from people while carefully disguising it as a humanitarian endeavour. I am connected to one of the humanitarian endeavours of the Maj.General and I do not want to contradict those who have said that he has attempted to do some good. When you do good, it does not mean that it gives you a licence to do bad. I have up to recently been very active in the maj. Gen. Salim Saleh Foundation for Humanity and since these revelations, I have found it difficult to reconcile my conscience as a Member of Parliament to speak freely while at the same time to remain a Board Member. I will therefore, disclose that I have privately sought appointment to meet with him and tender in my resignation.
Maj.Gen. Salim Saleh's fall from grace to grass in my view is a good omen in the fight against corruption. It is a good omen because he is a leading figure in this country. No doubt, he is certainly one of the people who very few people want to offend. People know him as well connected. When people heard that I was involved in the Foundation which was working in Gulu, former Ministers even used to approach me those who had now been removed from Cabinet. They would say, " How can I meet the Maj. General?" They would give me letters. That shows the influence that he enjoys. His personal assistant set up an office, and even a fake personal assistant decided to start recruiting people and conning investors claiming he can link them to the Maj.General. That is the extent of the influence that the Maj.General enjoys. I therefore question his motive as a nationalist and also as a person in pursuing these things? Mr. Speaker, he has resigned, he has not been convicted by any court, he has been tried, convicted and sentenced by his own conscience, in my view. Do his accomplices not have consciences also? How do you feel, you people? Why do you not resign?
MR. AMANYA MUSHEGA: Point of clarification. Mr. Speaker, I thank hon. Mao for yielding the Floor and at an appropriate time, I intend also to make a contribution, both as a Minister and a Member of Parliament for Igara East. One time, permit me to say this, I was talking to hon. Mao and I asked him, I said, " how is the Foundation doing?" Then he retorted to me, he said, "I can assure you, Mr. Minister, that the foundation is in the Maj. General's briefcase " (Laughter).
I rise on a point of clarification because some of us have no intentions of speaking with one tongue and acting with another hand. Hon. Mao has, until he meets the Maj. General, been active in the Maj. General Salim Saleh Foundation, and obviously, he seems to be familiar with what has been going on in Government, and he has been a link between the Maj. General and the men seeking influence. I am seeking clarification from him, that do you sometimes feel haunted by your conscience, and could you clarify to us, what was or is your role until tomorrow when you sort it out in this Foundation for humanity? What has been the source of this money? How has it been dispersed? And what role has it played in Gulu, and especially in Gulu Municipality? It would assist me in my contribution at a later stage, because I respect your integrity and youthfulness in many respects. (Laughter). Could you clarify, please.
MR. MAO: Well, Mr. Speaker, to me this is a golden chance because it gives me the opportunity to disclaim responsibility for Maj. Gen. Salim Saleh's actions. I am not Maj. Gen. Salim Saleh, I am Norbert Mao. He wrote a letter and invited me with others to be part of the Board of the Foundation which he set up. The Foundation has been operating on funds contributed by Maj. Gen. Salim Saleh personally and others contributed by those who he has lobbied for support, for instance Master Mine Tobacco, which contributed some money.
There is no project to my knowledge which has come through me to Gulu Municipality, but I know that the Foundation has built four boreholes in the area of Bweyale across the Karuma where our displaced people are staying. The money came from the Foundation and it came from a contribution by Maj. Gen. Salim Saleh of 20 million which he gave to the Foundation.
As a Board Member, I do not earn any salary from the Foundation, in any case when I wrote my letter accepting the position, I said, "I accept to be a Board Member, but purely as a volunteer." Because I knew these kind of things could come up. I am not so short sighted, Mr. Speaker.
At one point, I wanted to resign from the Foundation because of its activities in the Local Council elections in Gulu which I did not like because there was some partisanism in the Local Council elections. But I decided that well, I do not want to appear like I am not a person of good judgement, I decided to remain in the Foundation. The Foundation will continue without me because it is not my Foundation.
And I was honest when I told the hon. Minister that the Foundation is in the Maj.General's briefcase, because a briefcase is that one which provides the resources for the Foundation - that was my meaning. I was honest and I remain true, I have not been a link between Maj. Gen. Salim Saleh and anybody. But people had the illusion, when they hear that you are a director, they get that illusion that you are powerfully connected. I told them that I actually do not meet the Maj. General as often as you think. I did not even have his direct phone number until a few days ago. So, Mr. Speaker, I hope that disposes off the question, I will wish well for the foundation because I think it can continue without me. But I do not want as the African saying goes, for anybody to tie goats ears on my head so that the wolves can eat me.
MISS. BYANYIMA: Mr. Speaker, I am seeking a small clarification from hon. Mao.
MR. MAO: I will take it, Mr. Speaker.
MISS. BYANYIMA: Point of clarification. Thank you. This is concerning what you have just said was the Foundation's role in Local elections in Gulu District. I would like him to give us some more clarification on that, because as we were investigating and the amounts grew larger and larger into thousands and thousands of millions, it became apparent that this kind of taking from UCB cannot be merely for feeding families or sending kids to school. This stealing at this level definitely is for other purposes other than survival. And I began to suspect that perhaps there are even intentions to hijack our democracy. So, when he mentions involvement in Local elections by the Foundation, I would like to know, what this money was being used for in elections. Is this an attempt to steal and hijack the democracy brought in by the Movement?
MR. MAO: Mr. Speaker, that will forever remain a speculation in my view. I believe that any person would want to be as influential as possible. Certainly, all of us who are here want more influence and I believe that it is not proper for me to blame the Maj. General of wanting to hijack Uganda's democracy. I can only speak about Local Council elections in Gulu where those who belonged to the Foundation, for example the man on the ground who runs the Foundation's offices in Gulu was reported by many people to have gone around promising that if they vote for a particular candidate, then Maj. Gen. Salim Saleh's money is going to pour into the district. And given the way it has been going to Luwero, I hope some people were influenced. That is the extent to which I believe his influence was in the Local Council elections.
There was also money which was at large, and I asked other people in the Foundation where that money was going. I believe that the money was abused to a certain extent, but by the time I came into the Foundation, it is not to my knowledge that a specific amount went to a certain project, a specific amount went to bribe so and so or such a person, but I know that there were complaints by those who were in the campaigns that the Salim Saleh's Foundation was involved in election impropriety. As a Board Member by then, I wanted to find out who was specifically involved. Because when you name the Foundation, you name me also, and since I did not support that candidate whom they were supporting, I was on the other side.
So, Mr. Speaker, in answer to hon. Winnie Byanyima's question, I would ask her to raise that at a more appropriate forum because this one may derail us from what we are talking about, namely corruption in the Privatisation process. I agree with the hon. Member for Mbarara Municipality that it is possible somebody can have such an agenda. (Interruption) Mr. Speaker, I am sure about the hon. Winnie Byanyima's sex. (Laughter). It was a slip of the tongue. I made that aside statement because somebody asked, am I sure that she is not a he?
DR. ALIKER: Point of clarification. Could the hon. Mao inform the House the sex of the Member, whether she is a female, male or hermaphrodite? (Laughter)
MISS. KIRASO: Point of order. Mr. Speaker, we have been sitting here since a half past 2.00 p.m; yesterday we sat here up to almost 7.00 p.m. to debate a very important matter concerning the process of Privatisation and a very serious Report from the Committee on which I was a Member. I find it extremely unfortunate, Mr. Speaker, that we can now start digressing into matters of sex, of the foundation and the rest of that; and I find it extremely unfortunate that the Minister in charge of Parliamentary Affairs can stand up and ask such a question as he asked. Mr. Speaker, is hon. Martin Aliker in order -(Interruption)
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: Any person who is out of focus is out of order. So, if this is out of focus, it is out of order.
MR. MAO: Mr. Speaker, I apologise to my Sister hon. Winnie Byanyima, that it was not my intention to trivialise this debate and my response was to her question actually. Thank you. Mr. Speaker, I was asking why his accomplices have not resigned. People have said before that Parliament has powers. It is now for me to add that for those who will not move quickly, they will be moved by Parliament. Those who have been accused are still to be brought to book. The NRM has claimed to have fought for the rule of law. That rule of law is also binding on them. There is no way they are going to hide from it. Indeed, Mr. Speaker, when a big tree falls, the surrounding ones cannot remain standing. That is why I said, Maj. Gen. Salim Saleh's fall from grace to grass is a good omen because we are going to see others also falling.
The public is very excited that those who have been misappropriating funds are being isolated and cornered. To me, they are right because corruption is the biggest tax on the people of Uganda. President Museveni in his book entitled 'What is Africa's Problem' called it a cancer. I am disturbed however by the way he treats cancer. Because he says about Saleh, "He came and confessed to me and I forgave him." This is corruption, and you do not forgive cancer. I have to raise this concern here in this House. He called it a cancer in his speech to the NRC. Mr. Speaker, you cannot treat cancer using vaseline by forgiving people, you have got to cut it out. It is a massive operation, but somebody has to do it. And in this case the Parliament has got to take the surgical knife and cut it out.
Sometime back, Mr. Speaker, I stood here and said something which people jeered at; some people even got up and fumed at me when I asked a simple question, that is the President of the Republic of Uganda himself as clean as he is touted to be? And I made a remark that fish starts rotting from the head, I hear it quoted now. That was a mere statement. I am now going to add on it in terms of methodology. Mr. Speaker, when you are sweeping a staircase, you start from the top one. You sweep stairs going downwards, you do not start sweeping stairs from the middle. If this Parliament is determined to fight corruption and to sweep the staircase of Uganda's Government, we have got to start from the top. It may be clean, but the sweeping has to start from there. The President of the Republic of Uganda -(Interruption)
MR. ONGOM: Point of clarification. Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and thank you hon. Mao for allowing me to ask for this clarification. It is a very important statement that you have made. Obviously, you know, we are dealing I think with a system here. You know, some of these people who have been mentioned were very honest and straight forward Ladies and Gentlemen before and I personally have very high respect for some of them. Are we sure that our stairs are really starting from the right point? Because we might be carrying out the kind of operation that has been illuding us in the North for a long time now, people went to the bush, started with UPA, their allies came out, Lakwena remained. Lakwena came out because she was defeated, Kony remained, and I thought we should have learnt a lesson from that, that it is a system somewhere, we are not quite hitting the piece of the problem. Are we sure that even when we clean these steps now that some more dirts will not come if the system remains? That is the clarification I would like to have. (Laughter).
MR. MAO: I thank you, Mr. Speaker. I will take the information, Mr. Speaker.
MAJ. GEN. TUMWINE: Point of information. I wanted to give information on the issue of forgiveness. Some of the last words of Jesus Christ when he was at the Cross, were, "forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing." And I was looking at the subject of forgiveness because some Members have gone as far as using words as 'sweeping', 'hanging' and things like that. And I wanted to give information that, when I trace where the Movement has come from, and how the word 'forgiveness' has been such a fundamental foundation pillar of our Movement, that word 'forgiveness', I thought that I should give this information because forgiveness allowed us to forgive many Members who are in this House who would have otherwise been tried of treason, who would have otherwise been tried of so many crimes. And I wanted to say that anybody who should attack and rightfully so deal with the evils that are in our society should never denigrate the importance of forgiveness, because that is one of our pillars that has built this Movement. I thank you.
MR. MAO: Mr. Speaker, please allow me to continue up to the end of my speech and sit down and allow people make their own substantive contributions rather than riding on the back of my contribution. I do not condemn forgiving. All of us should be forgiving, but the forgiveness of God is impartial. Here is a Head of State forgiving his brother, but there are those whom he does not forgive. So, if these Rules of Procedure of forgiveness was well known, then people would know who is going to be forgiven and who will not be forgiven. Maj. Gen. Salim Saleh has been forgiven too many times by President Museveni and yet President Museveni is human.
I continue, Mr. Speaker, that this forgiving does not stop us from moving forward with the duties of this Parliament as outlined in the Constitution. And my point was that President Museveni has got to come clean on these issues of corruption, because previously there was the question of DANZE. This Parliament toyed around with it, it is still tacked away under some carpet. One day the carpet will be removed and DANZE will surface again, a lot of money was lost.
Then came the question of forgiving Maj. Gen. Salim Saleh. I believe, Mr. Speaker, that the top stair is the Head of State and in a democracy, nobody is above the Law, not even the Head of State. The last time I stood here and asked this question, some Members shot up and said, the President is above board. think it is allowed to point a finger, let me be proved wrong. My pointing a figure should not be condemned outright, if we are really building a democracy.
I comment on issues that were raised by hon. Ongom about the system, and hinted on by hon. Omara Atubo yesterday. This is an important debate and we should not be shy from addressing fundamental political issues irrespective of our view point based on principles. The Government of Uganda should take collective responsibility for corruption. Because when you are in Government, you take responsibility for what is going on. Has the Movement Government got the capacity to re-invent itself or is it good at just mere whitewashing? Yesterday, the hon. Kabasharira complained that why is a caucus meeting of the Movement scheduled at a time when we are debating this important Motion. Is it intended to whitewash certain people so that the Parliament is derailed? I salute her spirit in condemning that spirit of derailing debate.
This is also the right time for us to talk about the system of Government in Uganda and the extent to which the Movement system can go in being fully open and making corruption difficult. I submit Mr. Speaker, that the Movement System makes a sitting Government indispensable because there is no other power centre. This would be a time for the very foundation of Government to be rocked, but you cannot rock it because there is no alternative. All other people who would be organised to take over are locked out of the field constitutionally. This may be the time to ask some of these questions about the limitations of the Movement System. Every system has limitations and when I point out the limitations of the Movement System, I should not be condemned outright.
Look at PAC! In many countries, the Public Accounts Committees is shared by a member of the opposition because he has a vested interest in pointing out even the smallest discrepancies in the Government. But if the Chairman of PAC is a historical member of the Movement, he has vested interests in the good name of the government, how can he be a good watch dog?
Mr. Speaker, for three years, PAC has not had a Report. If the Chairman was somebody else, he would be in a position to question especially if he was from another power centre. The debate on the political ramifications of this Report should not be suppressed. Those who believe strongly in the Movement may say, "you multi-partyists, do not spoil our thing", it is also ours, we are Ugandans. If Uganda was a company, all of us would be equal share-holders; me, you and everybody irrespective of rank.
These questions will form part of the debate on the referendum. When people discuss the merits of the systems allowed by the Constitution, Ugandans are taking note and they will want a system which makes a Government dispensable. If it becomes hopeless, it should be disposed of and another one takes over. But the Movement makes a sitting Government indispensable. That is my humble submission.
The short point is that corruption is directly proportional to the defects in a political system. We should cure the defects in a political system. We are under the Movement System now, but we need a good Movement System. The mere fact that it is a Movement System does not mean that we should have the tail end of the Movement system.
I end, Mr. Speaker, by giving some proposals to the question - what is to be done? One, it is not enough to resign, Mr. Speaker. Mahatma Ghandi said, poverty is the worst form of violence. Those who are stealing are equivalent to those who are cutting off our people's lips, those who are throwing grenades, those who are killing. Poverty is a form of violence, and in my view those named should leave public office to facilitate investigation because they may be sitting on something. Let them leave the chair first. They may be protesting their innocence but in the meantime, let them get up so that we look under them. They may be covering some vital information.
Furthermore, they should face the law. I am not an advocate for mob justice, I do not want us to lynch anybody, that is why we are eagerly waiting for people to give replies to all these statements in the Report. They should face the law, and if found guilty, they should be jailed and they should be fined heavily in addition to refunding what they have stolen.
Secondly, Mr. Speaker, the debate on our transition to a more open system where organised groups can compete as opposed to individuals, should be accelerated. The limitations of this system must be debated and rectified while we aspire to go to a more competitive system. It is not outlawed, I abide by the Constitution, Mr. Speaker, but to disagree with the Constitution is not to disobey it. Some people talk as if when you disagree with the Constitution, you are disobeying it. I disagree with Provisions of the Constitution, but Mr. Speaker, I am bound by it and I obey it 24 hours a day.
I also support the view that the Committee should be given more time and some of us who have more information are now willing to come up and give some of the information which you people have been asking for including information about assets of those who have been named.
I think this House is yet to see big shocks. We thought we had been shocked enough when we last flexed our article 118 muscle, but it looks like more shocks are to come, and this Committee should be given more time so that we can reveal more information. There are many people out there who want to give more information.
I should caution the Committee and all those who are in this struggle against corruption that to fight corruption is to fight the corrupt, and therefore, those who are fighting corruption should have no illusion that they are being cheered. You are not being cheered by everybody. There are people who wish to see you six feet under and maybe the Committee should be given protection, Mr. Speaker. I have heard Members of the Committee applying for hand guns, but we do not want Members of Parliament to protect themselves. Most of them are not very well trained and you are better off when you are two with your body guard other than fighting it out on your own.
Finally, Mr. Speaker, the system of privatisation in Uganda has failed because there is no mechanism of giving Ugandans a stake in the privatized enterprises. This kind of thing would have been balanced if there was a stock exchange in Uganda. There should be a stock exchange in Uganda so that all of us can buy a piece of this Country. Sometimes, we despise our neighbours like Kenya, but Mr. Speaker, we may have very strong armies but I think some of our neighbours have managed the privatization process better. The example of Kenya Airways is an excellent example. The example of the Kenya Commercial Bank, where even the Kenyans who are so poor have got a way of owning a piece of the Kenya Commercial Bank rather than waiting for a Kenyan Salim Saleh to smile the smile of mercy on them. I thank you, Mr. Speaker.
MR. OMODI OKOT (Kole County, Apac): Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I would like to join my Colleagues in recognising the great work undertaken by the Omongole Select Committee on Privatisation. Mr. Speaker, you will agree with me that some names and persons contained in this Report will never be the same again. Whatever, they have been, they will never be the same again because the Report has tried as much as possible to project the reality and the truth about men and their conducts in this Government. Considering the wide ranging task contained in the terms of reference of this Committee, and the skills, abilities, intelligence and sacrifices required by the Committee to produce a successful good work, I think the 111 days this Committee took in preparing this Report must be a commendable effort.
The name of the game in this Report is corruption. Whether we talk about mismanagement of privatization, we are going to end up with corruption. How UCB was sold or not sold is nothing but corruption.
I want to take some time briefly to talk about what corruption is ,and how we have developed it in this society to the extend where it is now. In general, corruption can be defined as a betrayal of an office for the duty or some considerations; how you can betray your office for some personal or private considerations. It can also be defined as an illegal use of public office for private gains. I said: bribes, sales of offices, granting of contracts to favour firms or individuals.
Corruption also can be defined as a consequence of a general moral collapse brought about by rampant individualism and self-seeking tendencies.
Corruption can also be seen as a way through which inefficiency in Government services or an organisation can come by.
Corruption can also be seen as a way that undermines popular confidence in a society and most of all, Mr. Speaker, corruption can also be seen normally as action favouring those who have political power and wealth; and this is the most important part on which I will base my debate on. That is an act involving those who have political power, wealth at their disposal.
We have to consider the following: in the event of defining and looking at how corruption has overrun our society today, let me look at corrupting actions, corrupted elements, corruptive tendencies and corrupt persons. These are different persons and situations in our society. This involves the Office of the President.
In the four names of Ministers mentioned in the Report, there is only one oddman-out in respect of region. There are three coming from the same region. Further, in the four names, there are two oddmen who do not belong to a relationship either by marriage or by some other ethnic considerations. Now, this leaves me to say, is it possible that the actions of the power at the present is corrupting enough? Because in those four names, we have two people whom I am aware this House knows very well have some very close relationship with the President.
All I am saying is it is important, Mr. Speaker, that the Office of the President assists this Country to find means and ways of fighting corruption by his own action. Time and again, this House has come with recommendations about things to do, Members who have spoken before me have named recommendations that have come from this House in the past - you will recall what this House discussed about Uganda Railway Corporation and the recommendation it came up with. You will recall many others. Now, what has the authority done about all this?
Silence may mean corruption. I would appeal to the President at this hour to, himself, take part in assisting this Country to get rid of corruption by his actions, by his implementing recommendations which this House may come up with, because, Mr. Speaker, if the President does not associate his actions and belief with the belief of this House, it is going to be very difficult for this House alone to fight corruption and win it. Who knows, Mr. Speaker, the level at which the corrupt Members of this House conduct their discussion and further deliberation with the President of this Country?
Corruption can be motivated, it can be motivated in the sense that you give me a job, I do it badly, there is a national outcry, you do not take action to correct me, you are motivating corruption, and I think this is a central point which this House must take into account that we advise our leaders not to motivate corruption.
Corruption can also be encouraged by our own conduct, by the conducts of the leaders, not until they agree to come out in the open and say, "this is the point and you are wrong" it is going to take us very far to come around corruption, Mr. Speaker.
Now, having said that, the question I am asking is, are we not at the moment making an institution in this? Because in the appointments for jobs, you consider a small area, and then in the way of punishment, you punish bigger areas which people do not share with you. How are you going to explain the allegation that you are favouring a part of the society? You are favouring some people in the community.
Not so long I go, I had the opportunity to go to the West, to the constituency of my hon. Friend, Augustine Ruzindana. There is a myth I want to take this opportunity to correct, that people in the Western part of Uganda are 'oozing' with money. I was able to see with my own eyes, when the Guest of Honour called for contribution, I saw not less than ten people donating Shs.50/= only. Now, this to me meant that the West and the North where I come from are more-or-less the same because in the North when you call for contribution for donation, those are the kind of money you will get - Shs.50/= - not that they do not want to participate in the programme, but that they have no money. That they have no money is actually true, Mr. Speaker.
I want to request that the Government takes very drastic steps in following the recommendations of this House and where possible, I would like to request those hon. Members whose names appeared in this Report especially on the very embarrassing column of the Report that they should make clean not only this House, but the Government too.
This debate here is not being echoed in this House alone; in the respective villages people are listening, what is going to happen. I think the man I have to be very very sorry sorry for is the President of this Country. How, after this debate, he is going to walk out. If these people do not take advice of this House, if the four Ministers do not take advice of this House. I think the President of this Country is going to be entangled in a very very embarrassing situation and people will be asking what he has done with the alleged thieving Ministers? This is the question now, Mr. Speaker.
Finally, another disturbing aspect is that of Salim Saleh - Salim Saleh up to last week has been Presidential Advisor on Defence and Advisor to the President. What can we deduce? Is there any way of defending -is there any way of putting it otherwise that because of his way of life that had contained in the Report? He may have been misadvising the President - because of his misadvising the President, the war in the North is now multiplying to the North and the West. I think these are not small matters, Mr. Speaker. What should go from this House is that Salim Saleh, much as he might have done for this Country, he did not fight for the liberty of this Country in order to come and rob it completely and throughout. He did not fight in order to come and mess in this Country. He did not fight in order to come and grab from this Country.
What the people are saying is, if all those monies that are now alleged to have been stolen by the people contained in this Report were in circulation, the financial economy of this Country would have been better. But I think I agree with them. So, the House has only one signal, one message to send out; that by the end of this debate, the hon. Members affected by the Report should not embarrass their own position and resign, I think they would like to have it, that they should not embarrass their Movement as a political party because it is going to be a tough ride. They will have to explain to us, the people of Uganda, what Movement represented in this affair. Movement is a Government now, Movement -(Interruptions)
MRS. BABIHUGA: Point of order. Mr. Speaker, is the hon. Member holding the Floor in order to allude that this Report on Privatization, that the findings have incriminated the individuals to have committed these atrocities in the name of the Movement in order to put the Movement in the open? Is it in order for him to adduce that the Movement is the one which committed these atrocities, Mr. Speaker?
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: I think it is the issue of assessing the entire situation as it is risen. In his thinking, the people named, for instance in the Report are top Government officials. They are using their positions in Government; they are Cabinet Ministers, some of them. I think for him, he is holding the entire Government responsible. That is his personal assessment of the factual situation as presented. So, really this is a personal assessment, I cannot say he should assess this way or that way. That is his conclusion, but the House will come to its own conclusion. Please, wind up.
MR. OMODI OKOT: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I would like to assure my hon. Sister that I am just crying for a moment to come when a Movement, as a political party will be in the game with other political parties in this Country, to make it able for the Movement as a party to put its case appropriately with others. Because Ugandans are seeing and they are comparing. Time will come - I do not know what will be after referendum - time will come when other political parties will be there also to put their alternative policies. So, this is the time Movement has got to pull socks up and prepare to have a case to put around. Mr. Speaker, I have nothing more to say. I want to thank again the Committee that produced this Report. Thank you.
THE DEPUTY SPEAKER: Hon. Members, I had thought when we started this Report that we would conclude it today, but it is not possible. I see a number of Members who have been standing since yesterday. Hon. Members for Jie, Aswa, Kilak and so forth. I have noted them. But since you appreciate the position which was put by the ministers concerned, that they want to prepare themselves and we have to be fair to them to give them time to prepare themselves, I have no alternative but to adjourn the debate to Tuesday. On Tuesday, we shall wind up this debate and come to a conclusion. With that, we come to the end of today's business. The House is adjourned to Tuesday at 2.00 p.m.
(The House rose and adjourned to Tuesday, 15th December, 1998, at 2.00 p.m.)
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