YEAR IN REVIEW: COSASE's vigilant inquiries unearth rot, yet recommendations gather dust

YEAR IN REVIEW: COSASE's vigilant inquiries unearth rot, yet recommendations gather dust
Livingston Ebiru appears before COSASE.

In 2023, the Public Accounts Committee of Commissions, Statutory, and State Enterprises (COSASE) earned a commendation for its relentless efforts in exposing corruption, malpractices, and financial leakages within government systems.

However, despite their impactful inquiries, concerns arise as their recommendations continue to languish without tangible results, prompting scrutiny of Parliament's efficacy in enforcing implementation.

Chairing an accountability committee in the current parliament, as noted by Joel Ssenyonyi, proved to be a formidable task.

Despite the committee's achievements, the tangible outcomes of their recommendations are yet to materialize, placing the spotlight on Parliament's failure to leverage its powerful tool of appropriation for effective implementation.

The report delves into key revelations, including the flouting of procurement regulations at the Uganda Civil Aviation Authority, the extravagant spending of Uganda Railway Corporation, questionable land purchases by KCCA, and alleged looting at the Uganda Printing & Public Corporation.

The Uganda Airlines Saga, marked by political appointments without relevant expertise, also came under scrutiny.

Ssenyonyi, the chairperson of COSASE, expressed both pride and frustration, stating,

"This is by far the very best in terms of delivery in the history of the committee."

He highlighted challenges, including interference from within parliamentary institutions and agencies manoeuvring around procurement processes.

The article quotes Julius Mukunda of CSBAG, who emphasizes the need for accountability committees' independence and laments institutions' lack of necessary support.

Mukunda points to the government's selective adoption of recommendations and notes instances where committees clash with the speaker.

Despite spending nearly 97 million shillings on investigations, there is uncertainty about whether the contents of reports, such as the one on Uganda Airlines, will ever see the light of day.

Concerns about demoralization among committees persist, with calls for Parliament to exercise its power and hold accounting officers accountable.

As the new year approaches, the question lingers: will the new tenure of COSASE usher in a new chapter capable of reversing the wrongs exposed or will the cycle of inquiries without substantial outcomes persist?

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