Parliament to undertake investigation into Refugee Scam
Parliament has this evening adopted a motion to set up a select committee of parliament to investigate the misuse of refugee funds by officials in the Office of the Prime Minister. The motion was presented by Obongi County MP Hassan Kaps Fungaroo and seconded by the kasilo county mp Elijah Okupa .
The directive followed a back to back argument between MPs and Deputy Speaker Jacob Oulanyah over how the investigations will be handled and the role the legislative assembly will play during the probe.
Whereas most of the MPs that submitted on the motion supported the idea of having Parliament investigate the matter, Oulanyah reminded of the fact that Police, Inspector General of Government (IGG) and United Nations were carrying out investigations on this matter.
The matter followed a motion tabled by Kaps Fungaroo (Obongi County MP) who asked Parliament to investigate the refugee scam that attracted both local and international condemnation over reports that officials at OPM had inflated the numbers of refugees in the country.
The development followed media reports in February 2018 where some OPM officials were accused of inflating refugee numbers, fraudulent distribution of food, bribery, interference with elections of refugee leaders and trafficking of refugee girls.
. Fungaroo in his motion noted that the corruption at OPM has escalated due to failure to highlight the role of OPM where instead of the officials playing the coordination, monitoring and evaluation to ensure that there is high degree of adherence of Aid Agencies to the established Refugees National legal and policy framework of Uganda, the staff in many incidences have taken over the donor role by directly implementing the programs.
Fungaroo also accused OPM officials of hatching a scheme to register refugee without the involvement UNHCR and other relevant government agencies such the department of citizenship and immigration, despite the fact that OPM is not well equipped to conduct such an exercise.
Fungaroo noted that corruption is not only in the OPM offices at the headquarters in Kampala but also at the field levels in refugees hosting areas.