Parliament is set to investigate the COVID-19 relief cash distribution process, which according to Nakaseke South MP Luttamaguzi Semakula, was a ‘sham’.
Luttamaguzi, who is also the deputy chairperson of the Public Accounts (Local Government) Committee of Parliament, said that many stakeholders of the relief process were sidelined, undermining the integrity of the whole exercise.
Luttamaguzi made these remarks in an interview with NBS TV, Friday afternoon.
“We have been interfacing officials from UBOS and they told us that they were not part of the process, this was a shock to many of the MPs but it did not come as news to me, we are used,” Luttamaguzi said.
Luttamaguzi said that it came to their notice that many of the intended beneficiaries of the relief aid did not receive the money despite government’s claim that over 95% of the vulnerable received aid.
Luttamaguzi said that the whole process was a ‘sham’ and all government entities involved have failed to offer conclusive accountability.
Luttamaguzi said that the public committee members will on Monday traverse all the urban areas to assess how many of the intended beneficiaries of the relief aid actually received it.
“We will go around the whole country and issue a report on the whole process.”
Luttamaguzi said that he does not think the real culprits will be brought to book, even after a report is made.
“We make these reports for future reference, our country is known that stealing is now part of us. Maybe in the future, we will have better systems to apprehend these people.”
The COVID-19 relief program saw government distributing Shs 100,000 to selected people classified as vulnerable during the 42-day lockdown.
The beneficiaries, according to Prime Minister Robinah Nabbanja, were identified from groups of people that survive on daily earnings in Kampala, all cities, and municipalities.
Government targeted 501,107 beneficiaries, which included bus or taxi drivers, conductors, baggage carriers, wheelbarrow pushers, touts, traffic guides, barmen, deejays, barmaids, waiters and bouncers, bar, gym and restaurant workers, boda boda riders, special hire drivers and Uber drivers, salons, massage parlour workers, teachers, and others.
Many of the said beneficiaries however did not receive the aid according to Luttamaguzi.