‘We Have No Evidence’- IGG Drops Charges Against Former UNBS Boss Livingstone Ebiru

‘We Have No Evidence’- IGG Drops Charges Against Former UNBS Boss Livingstone Ebiru

By Spy Uganda

Kampala: The Inspectorate of Government has withdrawn bribery charges against the former managing director of Uganda National Bureau of Standards, David Livingstone Ebiru over lack of substantive evidence.

According to Deputy Inspector General of Government, Patricia Achan Okiria, the move does not take away their determination to end corruption and this has saved the taxpayer of much-needed money if the accused had been able to win the case.

Achan further noted  that at the time they picked interest in the case, they were so confident that they would find sufficient evidence to pin Ebiru but it has been impossible thus the need to discontinue the case.

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”I personally state that we intend to discontinue the proceedings, because we accessed, we reviewed and discovered that we are not going anywhere with the case” Achan said.

Ebiru was fired from his Job in early August this year after being accused of bribing the UNBS Board to retain his juicy job.

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Ebiru’s woes started when he appeared before Parliament’s Committee on Public Accounts – Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises (COSASE) in which he admitted paying a shs100 million bribe in a desperate attempt to prevent the termination of his contract.

“I confess that I bribed the board to secure my position. The shs100 million was handed over to one board member for distribution,” Ebiru said but  later retracted the confession claiming it was made in a fit of anger something that could not save him from being arrested.

Days later, a letter inked by the Minister of Trade, Industries and Cooperatives, Hon. Francis Mwebesa, indicated that on top of facing a couple of corruption-related charges, Ebiru was fired from UNBS.

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According to Mwebesa, the National Standards Council stated that in a Special Meeting held on 1 August 2023, they reviewed and analyzed the evidence concerning the allegations of misconduct, mismanagement and misappropriation of funds and realized Ebiru is a serial agent of corruption who can’t be trusted anymore with any government office.

”Council also noted your allegation of bribery levelled against them, while before the Public Accounts Committee (COSASE), and your subsequent withdrawal of the same allegation. They observed that this has adversely eroded your moral standing to hold such an important responsibility of the office of Executive Director,”  Mwebesa said in his letter.

Mwebesa further pinned Ebiru that;

  1. You admitted to having withdrawn and spent PVOC collections funds (Non-Tax Revenue) totalling to approximately USD3.2M (approx. 11.5Bn) at source which was meant to have been remitted to the Consolidated Fund contrary to the Public Finance Management Act 2015;
  2. Admitted that you pent the amount totaling UGX 285M at Source, funds deposited by traders and businesses as security contrary to the advice and guidance of the Accountant General and the Republic of Uganda Treasury Instructions 2017;
  3. Admitted to having made several cash withdrawals without authorization of Council and the Treasury (PS/ST) contrary to the UNBS Finance and Administration Manual (5.0 [a]) and (5.6) and Treasury Instructions 2017; (especially paragraph 10.10.4);
  4. Admitted to having failed to discipline 5 staff members who caused financial loss to the Bureau totaling UGX 9.282Bn, after having backdated inspection dates on Inspection Reports and edited application dates on the E-portal Applications; and
  5. Denied having been investigated and found culpable by the IGG for the misappropriation of funds meant for the Fuel Marking Project jointly despite there being evidence of a plea bargain by him and others to refund the said misappropriated funds.

 

”In view of the above, and on account of your own admission to having breached the law and laid down procedures and in accordance with Section 11 (2), (5) [b] and [c] of the UNBS Amendment Act 2013, Council unanimously recommended that I cause your dismissal as Executive Director of UNBS,” reads Mwebesa’s letter firing Ebiru.

”I concur with the recommendation of the National Standards Council. Your admission of bribery under oath and attempting to withdraw such an allegation has caused grave injury to the reputation of the Chairman and Members of the Council. The purpose of this letter, therefore, is to inform you that I hereby dismiss you from the position of Executive Director of UNBS with immediate effect; in accordance with Section 11(2), (5) (b) and (c) of the UNBS Amendment Act 2013.” Mwebesa sealed Ebiru’s fate.

 

 

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