Farmers petition against Mafabi over accountability of BCU fund

Nandala Mafabi 

FDC Secretary General and Budadiri East member of parliament Hon Nandala Mafabi trouble continue to grow every single day.
Just few months  after celebrating beating president Yoweri Kaguta Museveni to the Board Chairmanship of Bugisu Cooperative Union (BCU), farmers have come out to protest against his leadership.
A group of 30 coffee farmers from Mbale petitioned the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Cooperatives Thursday over the same issue.
In their petition, the group which described themselves as the undersigned representatives of the member societies and delegates to BCU Annual Delegates Meeting, which constitutes the Supreme Authority of BCU say they are concerned about the current state of affairs of the union.
“As you know, the trading year for BCU Ltd for 2017 ended on 31st December, 2017 and its audited accounts for the year should have been presented to the members by 31st March, 2018. This has not been done as of 20th day of June 2018, 3 months later and there is no sign that the AGM will be held,” reads the petition in part.
It’s thus against this background that the farmers have rushed to the Minister to intervene.
“You are well aware that an AGM is a statutory meeting meant to give members accountability of the Union’s financial operations and state as at the close of the financial year. The duty to publish the present annually audited books lies with its board. The Board has not given any explanation to the members on why it failed to publish and present audited accounts within three months as stipulated by the law.
“And there is clearly no genuine reason to satisfy you, the Registrar. We are left wondering whether the Board is “cooking up” the accounts of the Union. We are aware that the law puts you at the center of cooperative governance with powers to regulate, supervise and to ensure that BCU Ltd is managed in accordance with the law.”
They now want the Ministry to convene a Special General Meeting of the union so that they elect a new board since the current one is deemed to have left office.
“The government is trying to revive cooperatives but how can you revive cooperatives if the law is not followed?” wondered Paul Mugoya, who led the delegation of coffee farmers.
In 2010 Nandala Mafabi was suspended by  Registrar of Cooperatives in the Ministry of Tourism, Trade and Industry
accusing himof mismanagement of the union fund. Nandala  protested the decision prompting  the ministry to order another forensic audit in December 2013 to look at accounts from 1996 to 2010.
The report exonerated Mr Mafabi of causing any financial loss to the union but asked him to return all the land titles in his possession which he did immediately.
In 2016 the Bugisu Cooperative Union (BCU) delegates accused him for failing to  accounts for Shs9 billion. He was later cleared of any wrongdoing in the same.
He always blame his trouble on president Yoweri Kaguta Museveni who he accuses of witch hunt with objective to kill BCU.

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