The First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for EAC Affairs, Rebecca Kadaga has said that she will not return the 300 iron sheets that she got from the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM).
While appearing before the parliamentary committee which is investigating the Karamoja Iron Sheets Scandal, Kadaga claimed that she followed the right procedures for the requisition of the iron sheets.
“When I read my name amongst the recipients of the Karamoja iron sheets, I was surprised,” Kadaga said.
She explained that she asked for iron sheets from OPM as her constituency (Kamuli) had been hit by a storm.
“The iron sheets I got were put to good use. Buzaaya Health Centre II, located at Buwooya, Bugulumbya Sub-county in Kamuli District has already been repaired. Also, Buwooya Primary School was roofed,” she said.
Earlier this week, President Museveni said all those involved in the Karamoja iron sheet saga must return the iron sheets or refund money equivalent to the iron sheets they took.
“Those who diverted the mabaati (iron sheets) but not for personal use, must pay back the equivalent value in money or return the mabaati for the Karachuna, so that programme goes on,” Museveni said.
When asked Museveni’s directive, Kadaga told the committee that she already put the iron sheets to good use and will only have to pay for the irons she got.
Meanwhile, officers manning the stores of the OPM at the Namanve industrial area have refused to receive a consignment of iron sheets purchased by Speaker Anita Among, to replace those that were given to her out of the relief items for Karamoja.
Several other big government officials are beneficiaries of the said iron sheets and these include; Vice President Jessica Alupo, Prime Minister Robinah Nabbanja, ministers, Mary Goretti Kitutu, Matia Kasaija, Judith Nabakooba, Lukia Nakadama, Rose Akello, and Hamson Obua among others.
However, only Kitutu has been charged before the court.
On Wednesday, she was denied bail by the Anti-Corruption Court. Only one of the minister’s four sureties is considered substantial enough to enable her to get released on bail, according to the court’s chief magistrate Joan Aciro.
She returns to court this Friday.