The state Minister for Lands and Bukonjo County Legislator Persis Namuganza is having sleepless nights after unknown hackers tapped into her telephone contact list and fleeced people of their money in her name.
According to the Minister, the suspects who began their illegal deal on Monday morning, started by sending a message to all persons saved in her telephone contact verbatim; “I am in a meeting but meanwhile help me and get for me where there is mobile money and deposit 1m or 2M or 3M I will refund you later. If you don’t have borrow for me because its urgent.”
The con artists then asked their victims to deposit the money on given telephone contacts in the names of a one Ssebandeke Muhamudu.
“First victims whom they conned were my people from the Ministry who sent Shs2m after the con artists told claimed that I needed the money from fuel. They sent several others and asked for the same amount of money,” Ms Namuganza said.
She says the con artists also tried to dupe Inspector General of Police Kale Kayihura of Shs 5m but did not succeed after the police boss used Namuganza’s alternative contact to reach out to her.
“When he (Kayihura) received the message, he used another line and called wondering if it was really me in need of the money, I explained that I had no idea,” she said
“To my surprise even when the network service provider told me they had blocked the number, it was still being used by these conmen,” she added.
According to the minister, over Shs 140m shillings has been duped from government Ministers, Members of parliament and friends.
One of the victims explained to Nile Post that he received a message allegedly from the Minister asking for Shs 980,000, which he sent immediately on the given contact. He again received a reply thanking him for sending the money but adding; “I made a mistake, it should have been Shs1,980,000.”
He again obligingly sent the remaining Shs 1m. However, the next morning, he received another message saying; “We have begun the meeting, unfortunately the person you sent the money has lost a patient in hospital, please send him another Shs 2m to handle expenses, all the money will be paid today at 5;00pm.”
The victim says that on receiving the message asking for more money, he noticed he had been fleeced.
Ms Namuganza however is not yet done with trouble, the minister also claims that she is receiving death threats from unidentified people who have given her three days to live.
“They say that I am one of the highly needed people in this government, the public should know in case I am not available in the coming days.”
Ms Namuganza came to the lime light after a swedge with ICT Junior Minister Aidah Nantaba in 2017. The two ministers were engrossed in a heated verbal exchange that saw them speak outrageously of each other.
Ms Nantaba would later call Namuganza an amateur who seeks political capital by fighting her, while Namuganza accused Nantaba of being jealous of President Museveni’s trust in her.