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OPM Officials In COVID-19 Relief Food Scandal Paraded In Court, Charged With Corruption

By Keefa Nuwahereza

Christine Guwatudde Kintu, the Permanent Secretary in the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM), Martin Owor, the Commissioner Disaster Management  and other officials who were last week arrested for allegedly inflating prices for Coronavirus (COVID-19) relief food prices, were on Tuesday charged with corruption.

The four senior government officials  were paraded before Buganda Road Court at 11am to face charges of corruption, this website has learnt.

The four who were arrested for causing government a financial loss of Shs4Bn after inflating prices of COVID-19 relief food include.

Apart from Guwatudde and Owor, the other suspects are Accounting Officer Joe Wanjala and Assistant commissioner procurement Fred Mutimba.

They were arrested by State House anti-corruption unit in an operation headed by Lt. Col. Edith Nakalema.

Nakalema, in her statement said, Guwatudde and others had rejected food supplies at low cost and opted to inflate figures by Shs500 and ended up causing a loss of Shs4Bn.

The officials quoted Shs3900 per kilogram of maize flour yet the market price  is Shs2500-3000 and Shs 4500 per kilogram of beans as opposed to Shs 3000-4000 market price.

During the procurement, government ordered 9,030,000 kilograms of maize flour and 635,000 kilograms of beans.

The suppliers included Afro Kai Uganda Ltd, Global Trust Ltd, Mandela Millers and Aponye Uganda Ltd, who have since been suspended because of colluding with the suspects to cause government

a loss of over Shs4Bn. The suspects are currently still being grilled by the detectives at the Criminal Intelligence and Investigations Directorate (CIID) in Kibuli.

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