The Shs402 million that National Resistance Movement party chairman Yoweri Museveni gave to his officials to take down to his party members the gospel of mobilising them to participate in the recent verification of voters register by the independent Electoral Commission has sharply divided the ruling party.
The officials from the office of national chairman Kyambogo led by President Museveni’s Personal Assistant Milly Babalanda Doka on receiving the Shs402 million from the president allegedly decided to only give each district executive committee of NRM Shs1 million leaving out the party structures at the sub county, parish and village levels.
But Sub County NRM chairpersons from Kamuli have not let it go. The angered party leaders convened a meeting at Dawson Hotel in Kamuli town last week and expressed dissatisfaction at the manner in which they were discriminated and excluded from the program “yet we are the ones in direct contact with party members at the grassroots and people are asking us about this money.”
Led by their publicity and chairman of Nabwigulu Sub County, Charles Magaya, the party leaders want the Kyambogo ONC to account for the balance of Shs274million which they remained with after giving each of the about 128 districts only Shs1 million.
“Sir Mr president and our national party chairman, I want to report to you that these guys you gave Shs402 million did not put it to the intended use. They only ate the money in lodges and returned to Kampala. There is impact and value for that money,” says Magaya in a recorded audio that has gone viral.
“Us at the grassroots who can ably do that work [of mobilising NRM members for the verification exercise] were neither involved nor contacted,” adds another NRM chairman in the audio.
The party leaders are even more enraged by the fact that the Kampala team spent on fuel, per diem and accommodation fees to only deliver Shs1 million.
“Couldn’t that money be wired to our district chairperson or the administrative secretaries and have that work done very well. These are the people we put in office to coordinate and monitor party activities. So why does the party pay them every month if really they cannot handle an activity of one million shillings? Those who are hijacking the duties of other people are the ones killing our party,” they said.
But in the West Nile region it was even worse. Leaders from the region complained on the ONC whatsapp group that they never even received the shillings 1 million.
“I understand the president gave Shs402 million . They are giving each district 1m so the remaining Shs280 million is just theirs being spent on their own fuel, hotel and per diem.
“Sincerely where is the value for money in this exercise when we can’t reach the actual people who should have done the verification on behalf of the party. The Sub County, Parish and village Chairpersons of NRM,” wondered Hajjat Madina a national NRM mobiliser hailing from West Nile.
Our efforts to get an official comment on this story failed as the contacts for the party spokesman, Rogers Mulindwa were not going through by the time of filing.