DP urges government to address UK sanctions seriously

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DP urges government to address UK sanctions seriously
Ismail Kiirya

The Democratic Party (DP) has urged the government to conduct a comprehensive investigation into the iron sheet controversy, which has resulted in the imposition of UK sanctions against Speaker of Parliament, Anita Annet Among, and two former ministers.

In a statement, the party emphasises the importance of taking these sanctions seriously, considering their impact on the country's diplomatic relations and international reputation.

"The timing of these sanctions presents an opportunity for us to reexamine the iron sheet case, which was not adequately resolved," stated Ismail Kiirya, acting DP spokesperson.

He urged the government not to disregard these sanctions, as they directly affect our diplomacy and national image.

He raised concerns about the lack of accountability in the investigation, questioning why the Speaker, who returned the iron sheets to the stores, was not questioned, and why the Prime Minister played no role in the investigations.

"The iron sheet issue appears to have been left unresolved, and we call upon the government to reopen the investigation without bias or favouritism," added Kiirya.

Recently, Speaker of Parliament Anita Among faced sanctions, including frozen assets, imposed by the United Kingdom. She also faced repercussions from the United Arab Emirates regarding the same matter.

The UK has directed all licensed financial institutions to promptly comply with the necessary measures.

On April 30, the UK imposed asset freezes and travel bans on Speaker Among and two former ministers of Karamoja Affairs, Mary Goretti Kitutu and Agnes Nandutu.

The UK's sanctions statement, signed by Deputy Foreign Minister Andrew Mitchell, stated that Kitutu and Nandutu misappropriated thousands of iron sheets from a government-funded housing project aimed at assisting vulnerable communities in Karamoja.

Among was found to have benefitted from the proceeds of the theft, according to the UK's statement.

"The UK is sending a clear message that benefiting at the expense of others is unacceptable. Corruption has consequences, and those responsible will be held accountable," remarked Mr. Mitchell.

"The actions of these individuals, who diverted aid intended for those in need and pocketed the proceeds, epitomize corruption and have no place in society."

However, Among protested against the sanctions, labelling them as "politically motivated" and a "witch-hunt" due to her involvement in passing the Anti-Homosexuality Act last year.

"I am bearing the burden on behalf of 48 million Ugandans because of the Anti-Homosexuality Act we passed in 2023," Among told journalists recently.

The government recently expressed surprise at the imposition of sanctions on "Ugandan politicians charged with corruption."

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