By Andrew Irumba
Samantha Mwesigye, a state attorney who recently narrated how she was sexually harassed by the deputy Solicitor general Christopher Gashirabake for over 10 years, was a few months back scrapped off the payroll of the Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs.
After being scrapped off the payroll and not receiving salary for months, Mwesigye is currently job hunting and has posted her Curriculum Vitae on social media, on top of sending applications to various organisations, although none is responding to her plight. Our ever very alert Spy who has been at the helm of this story has told this reporter that so far Samantha has sent 101 applications and CV to companies seeking job opportunities. “She is on the wall; I can tell you. She can hardly afford a pancake now as we talk, because her salary has been held for months and there seems to be no way through for her. In fact looks like her doors here at the ministry are not only closed but locked and keys thrown in Lake Victoria” our Spy at the ministry revealed .
The nation got grippled with shock a few months back after Mwesigye came out to advocate against employers in Uganda continuously sexually harassing female employees by exposing her abuser Gashirabake.
Following the shaming exposure, the Office of the Solicitor General responded to Mwesigye’s allegations of sexual harassment by refuting her claims.
Mwesigye said that Gashirabake, the director of legal affairs in the ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs, had been harassing her for several years but her efforts to get redress from police weer futile.
She said she reported the matter to different agencies but wasn’t helped. A leaked conversation she had with the Prime Minister, Dr Ruhakana Rugunda on March 3rd on social media later went viral.
“I know this is a break in protocol but am at work ends. I have done everything to follow protocol but the system seems orchestrates to frustrate me,” she wrote.
Mwesigye explained that she had been facing sexual harassment from Gashirabake. She claimed that she had reported the matter to the solicitor general in September last year and requested a sexual harassment committee be set up to investigate the matter but nothing was done.
Mwesigye noted that she had exercised restraint in ensuring that the matter doesn’t become public to protect the institution but that she also needed to be protected. She explained that she was even being frustrated and that she had intended to attend a UN procurement course in Washington,USA, using her own funds but the ministry denied to recommend her as her employer.
“Sexual harassment is systematic and must stop. Government must do more to ensure that women are protected in the workplace,” Mwesigye wrote.
She attached her petition to the inspectorate of government. Mwesigye said she was never helped prompting her to go public.
However, later the solicitor general Francis Atoke, issued a statement indicating that he constituted a Committee as required by the Employment (sexual harassment) regulations 2012 on February 6, 2019 to investigate the complaints.
“The committee is chaired by the administrator general and other senior officials from the ministry e.g. the secretary Law Council, the acting undersecretary finance and administration and the assistant commissioner human resources management,” reads the statement in part, although the Committee also didn’t help Mwesigye.
She was instead later fired from her job and Gashirabake walked away Scot-free.