CASH BONANZA: Internal Auditor Exposes Ghost workers at Ministry of Education and Sports

An Internal Audit carried out at the ministry has exposed a rot the ministry of Education And Sports where permanent secretary is accused of conniving with his junior officer a commissioner Human Resource at the ministry to pay Ghost workers.
According to an Internal Memo from the ministry dated 09/01/2017 which was written by Martin Muhanga an internal auditor and copied to Ps/ES , US/F$A , PAS F&A, A/C/IA, AC/A ,Transport Officer under the subject PAYMENY OF ALLOWENCES AND POSSESSION OF GOVERNMENT VEHICLES IN RESPECT OF MR. KAYIMBA BADRU AND MR. NTUNGWA RICHARD – DRIVERS which this website got a copy, Muhanga narrated how the government has been paying the said drivers all the salaries and allowances when actually they had ceased to be government workers.
“It has been noted that, notwithstanding the communication in the letters to the officers and action taken on their salaries, Mr. Badru Kiyimba and Ntungwa Richard are in possession of Government vehicles and continue to draw both lunch and other field allowances as if they are employees of the government of Uganda”. Reads part of the Memo.
The senior internal auditor adds that he went further and made his recommendations which included that both drivers should hand over the government properties in their possession including the Government Vehicles.
Muhanga also recommended that all forms of allowances payments in respect to the above drivers be stopped with immediate effect and that all funds that had been advanced to the two officers should be availed for review and retired if they comply with the available guidelines.
He also recommended that all funds of Government that the two officers have earned illegally all this time should be recovered from the officers.
He also called for an investigation to be carried out to further ascertain how these officers assessed a government payroll without appointment letters.
However when contacted for a comment the ministry’s PS Alex Kakoza told us that we should go and ask the commissioner Human Resource saying that he was preparing his presentation because he was going to appear before cabinet.
“I know these things are being circulated by Muhanga and am tired of them but you go and ask commissioner Human Resource because am busy preparing for cabinet” said Kakooza on phone.”
The Ministry recently forced out of office Muhanga for questioning payout of unfinished World Bank funded project.
Martin Muhanga was forced out of office on June 1, 2018.
His office was subsequently broken into by senior ministry officials under the supervision of area police boss a one Sempijja.
Ministry spokesman, Patrick Muhinda when contacted said he was in a meeting.
SpyReports has learnt early that this year, the Ministry of Education and Sports contracted a UK firm, Mott Macdonald Ltd to carry out consultancy services for the Education Sector ECD Policy Review under the UTSEP/GPE Project.
Indeed, the firm was contracted and kicked of the work.
The World Bank funded project costs USD100m and part of it, Shs5bn would go for the review of early childhood policy.
“Government has been short in the area of childhood policy. Most of this has been in the hands of the private sector and so, this project was intended to streamline that,” a well-placed source said.
The consultancy started its work and was to have a Technical Reference Committee in place.
The committee’s role was to qualify payments to be made to the contractor.
In fact, as stipulated in an exclusive document seen by this website TRC’s role was to review reports and documents from the consultancy firm before submission to the relevant working groups and authority.
However, a February 2018 meeting convened by junior education Minister, Rose Mary Seninde discovered that whereas the inception report had been done and fully in place, the meeting realized that there was a problem with milestones 2, 3 and 4.
“Although 2 and 3 had been paid and the preparation to pay for milestone 4, the final comment of the contract manager showed that milestones 2, 3 and 4 had issues,” a source noted.
Whereas milestones 2, 3 and 4 were said to have had issues and did not call for payment, a letter dated February 26, 2018, a copy of which seen by this website authorized payment for the 4th installment.
“The submitted Zero Draft ECD report forms the basis upon which consultations will be made and whose input will inform the final product. This is therefore to forward the claim for onward processing for payment…,” part of the letter by Contract Manager, ECD Policy Review at the Ministry, Assistant Commissioner Ibrahim Bigabwa reads.
Interestingly, the requisition was penned and forwarded a day before the Seninde meeting held on February 27, 2018.
Insiders say Muhanga is wanted out for questioning controversial payments.
Upon landing on the Milestone 4 requisition for payment, Muhanga penned double letters on March 16, 2018 and March 20, 2018 to the Assistant Commissioner Internal Audit and Contract Manager ECD Policy Review respectively.
The double letter questioned the inconsistencies in the payments and also offered guidance.
“…Payments to the consultant continue to be processed through his office and yet the clear process of paying for consultant services is not being followed….,” part of the letter to the Assistant Commissioner Internal Audit reads. In light of the above presentation, Muhanga warned that: “I shall review this payment and give it the assurance it deserves so that government gets value for money from the consultant.”
“…Refer to your report to the Minister of State for Primary Education where your highlighted the status of Milestone 4 as ongoing validation by the Technical Reference Committee and that was as at 27th/02/2018 and yet you signed loose minute forwarding for payment on the 26th/02/2018 a day earlier than your progressive report to the Minister. This confirms that you actually forwarded documents for payment for unfinished product by Mott Macdonald because by this time according to your progressive report the TRC was still validating the Consultant’s work. One wonders what you were paying when you did not have a complete product from the Technical Reference Committee…” Muhanga wrote to Bigabwa.
He concluded: “In the view of the above audit observations, please clarify on why the process of payments for reviewing of the ECD policy by Mott Macdonald was handled that way. I would be glad if individual written submissions are made for final consolidation of a report on the subject…”
In what appeared a response to Muhanga’s letter however, Bigabwa, he authored a document on March 16, 2018 reporting lost consultancy payments even upon receiving Muahnga’s.
“….I allocated the payment request and all the attached documents to Mrs. Sukie Bainomugisha, SIA, to verify and revert to my office for review. I have been informed that you picked the said payment request from her desk, in her absence and without her knowledge, on Monday 12th March, 2018 and went with it….” Part of Biragabwa’s letter reads.
“…The purpose of this memo is twofold: 1. To demand that you return the document to the officer from whose desk you picked it with minimum delay 2. To advise you to desist from such unprofessional conduct in furtherance of government business,” Bigabwa said.
Due to the above, senior officials in the ministry broke into Muhanga’s office on Friday morning. His locks were changed while important documents were seized. Impeccable sources say he was tasked to either handover office that Friday or on Monday morning.
Phoned for a comment, Muhanga said he could not comment on the matter,
We have however learnt that the ministry has filed eight cases against Muhanga at the Criminal Investigations Directorate in Kibuli.
The cases include; abuse of office, embezzlement, neglect of duty, theft of documents, threatening violence, disobedience of lawful orders, fraudulent recruitment and promotion and causing financial loss.

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