Parliament of Uganda

Parliamentary Committee on Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises (COSASE), is investigating Shs15 billion which has gone missing from bank accounts of the Departed Asians property Custodian Board.

According to the report of the divestiture committee of the custodian board, the money was on a collection account in Central Bank. The said money was collected after the sale of 1524 properties belonging to the departed Asians.

The report indicates that Shs7 billion had been collected by 1994 after the expelling of Indians by late Idi Amin and before the relieving divestiture committee of the custodian board of its duties in 2006, the money had accumulated to Shs15 billion.

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The vice chairman of COSASE Ibrahim Kasozi expressed his dismay of the loss of the money and asked the government to give accountability of the said money. “Gov’t sold all these properties but there is no accountability for all that money,” he added.

The Kampala central MP, Muhammad Nsereko said, the board does not show how it spent the said money and they didn’t compensate the departed Asians.

In December, 2001, the Auditor General report indicated that there was undervaluing of properties of departed Asians and mismanaging of the entire process and hence forth ceasing the financial loss. Since then, various people have been petitioning parliament to investigate sale of departed Asians properties.

Appearing before the committee, the Minister of Finance Matia Kasaija, and the permanent secretary in the Finance Ministry Keith Muhakanizi and Undersecretary Betty Kisimbizi were questioned over the subject matter.

Kisimbizi was queried over her role of creating two accounts in Stanbic Bank which acted as the collection accounts. The said two accounts were allegedly not approved by the accountant general for collection of money proceeding from the sale of Asian properties.

Kisimbizi later refuted Shs15 Billion figure noting that by the time she assumed office in 2007, she found only Shs1.1 billion proceeding from the sale of Asian properties and had no idea of the said created accounts.