President Museveni has revealed that the amount of money that was earmarked to pay election agents for the ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM) in the 2021 general elections was swindled by those he appointed in his office.
President Museveni made the revelations while addressing Kampala NRM village chairpersons at Kololo Ceremonial Grounds on Wednesday.
Lamenting over the poor performance registered by the ruling party in the central region, Museveni claimed the votes that were meant to be tallied for him were instead changed and awarded to the opposition’s Bobi Wine.
He said those he had appointed to ensure such events do not happen failed in their job because they had swindled the money to support voter protection and pay his agents.
According to Museveni, the fault goes to the people he appointed in the Office of the National Chairman (ONC) in Kyambogo, who instead embezzled the funds.
“That came from the ONC which was supposed to appoint some agents per village and fight those wars, but I do not know what happened,” Museveni claimed.
He summoned the current head of the ONC Hadija Uwizeye to elaborate on the claims based on a report issued to the president and her office.
In her report, Uwizeye maintained that her predecessor and the occupants of the office indeed did not pay agents despite receiving the money.
Uwizeye’s submission was cheered on loudly by the members present, and so was Museveni’s repetition of the claims.
Before Uwizeye assumed office, ONC was under the current Minister for President Milly Babalanda.
On February 17th 2021, officials under Milly Babalanda’s leadership at ONC were arrested and detained at Nalufenya for the alleged misappropriation of Shs200m.
The money in question was meant for voter protection and paying agents.
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Nile Post understands that following the reports of the embezzlement, Museveni summoned Babalanda, her office Administrator Kirunda Faruk, then NRM Secretary General Kasule Lumumba to Rwakitura in March 2022 to a meeting where he tasked them to file their defence.
The tough meeting ended in a stalemate as Museveni did not take in the defence by ONC officials, but nothing would be heard of it later until yesterday when he lifted the lid on the matter again.
In comments on the matter prior, former ONC administrator Kirunda Faruk acknowledged mishaps in the vote protection specifically in the Busoga sub-region, adding that some elements embezzled the money and will be hunted down to refund it.