By Spy Uganda
According to reports, the Criminal Investigation Directorate (CID) has kicked off investigations against Executive Director of Uganda Coffee Development Authority (UCDA) Dr Emmanuel Iyamulemye Niyibigira who is on spot for allegedly swindling not one million but 1.3 billion Uganda shillings meant for the distribution of coffee seeds countrywide.
It is said that CID probe against Niyibigira was ignited by the Ministry of Finance Permanent Secretary, Ramathan Ggoobi who reportedly complained of the funds’ mismanagement following the Auditor General’s Report which cited dubious management of funds in the Authority.
The above has been confirmed by the letter Ggoobi wrote tasking the Accounting officer (UCDA) to explain Niyibigira’s “unsatisfactory” use of public funds.
In the letter, Ggoobi notes, “Following the Audit of your vote by Internal Audit in Financial Year 2020/21, and a review and consolidation of audit reports by Internal Auditor General in accordance with Section 47 (2) (c), your entity is rated as “Unsatisfactory.””
In the same letter, Ggoobi accuses UCDA of; unaccounted for funds advanced to staff totaling Shs77.6 Million, Procurements initiated but not completed in Financial Year 2019/20 worth Shs 14.9 billion, Staff appointed without Certified Academic Documents and Overcommitment on Procurement of CWDR Planties (Coffee seedlings) worth Shs1.38 billion among others.
Ggoobi further tasks UCDA, “I am accordingly asking you to respond to all issues raised in the consolidated annual report as per extract of the report attached with a clear action plan to implement the recommendation. Your report should be received no later than 27th December 2021. I may recommend the penalties and surcharge against you as provided for in Section 80 of the same Act in addition to other administrative sanctions.”
All these come at a time when Niyibigira is battling criticism from Ugandans for unclearly withdrawing the country from International Coffee Organization (ICO).
The International Coffee Organization’s 2007 agreement, signed by exporting and importing nations, seeks to promote sustainable output and ensure profits trickle down to small-scale producers. Niyibigira said wants the agreement to do more to tackle challenges such as price volatility, climate change and import tariffs.
The ICO said Uganda’s withdrawal from the agreement became effective on Feb. 2, after the country flagged its intention not to join the extension in September.