The Anti-Corruption Court has charged Minister of State for Finance, Planning and Economic Development Amos Lugoloobi and remanded him to Luzira Prisons until April 20.
Lugoloobi was nabbed last week over allegations related to the mismanagement of iron sheets which were meant for the impoverished people in Karamoja. He reportedly used the 400 iron sheets to roof animal shade at his farm in Bbaale. He is the second minister to be charged over the iron sheets with the first being the minister for Karamoja Mary Goreti Kitutu.
Appearing before Senior Principal Magistrate Grade One, Albert Asiimwe, Lugoloobi was charged with two counts of dealing with suspect property contrary to Section 21 (a) of the Anti-Corruption Act.
Prosecution avers that between the 14th day of July 2022 and 28th February 2023 at the office of the Prime Minister’s stores in Namanve in Mukono district, He dealt with government property- 400 pre-painted iron sheets marked Office of the Prime Minister having reason to believe that they were acquired as a result of loss of public property. The minister however pleaded not guilty to the two counts.
Through his lawyers, Lugoloobi didn’t relent, he applied for bail. Lugoloobi contented that he is suffering from hypertension, Diabetes, and is fresh from a heart surgery which was conducted last year. During his arrest, he had just arrived from Agha Khan Hospital.
Presenting seven sureties who included Namutumba District woman MP Mariam Naigaga; Former State Minister for Health (Primary Care) and EALA legislator James Kakooza; Kiboga County MP Kefa Kiwanuka; Joseph Muvawala, Executive Director of National Planning Authority; Paul Mugamba, Lugoloobi, Moses Kalangwa the Chairman of NRM Kayunga district and Martin Ssekajja, his application was turned down.
“I am mindful of the fact that Justice delayed is justice denied and Justice hurried is Justice Barrett. There are several documents that the court cannot analyze now. I want to borrow the interest of both parties and also to ensure that the decision to grant or not grant bail is judiciously arrived at court would require ample time to study the documents and authorities cited by the parties. For this reason, the ruling on this date application is reserved for 20th April 2023 at 12 noon,” he ruled.