KAMPALA, UGANDA: The Directorate of Public Prosecution Justice Jane Francis Abodo has dropped all corruption charges against Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC) Chairperson, Ms Sylvia Muwebwa Ntambi.
The DPP in a letter addressed to the Anti-Corruption Court in Kampala said her office wished to discontinue the prosecution of Mrs Ntambi, having lost interest in the case.
The dropping of charges happened barely a month after the accused changed her name. According to a deed poll, she renounced and abandoned the use of the name Sylvia Ntambi as it appears on her national identification card and in the lieu assumed the name Sylvia Nabatanzi Muwebwa.
Ntambi together with nine other commission officials were facing charges of Embezzlement, Causing Financial Loss, Conspiracy to Defraud, Abuse of Office and Corruption.
Prosecution told court that between July 2018 and April 2019 at EOC offices in Kampala, Ms Ntambi being the chairperson of the commission, neglected her duty of directing the affairs and administration of the commission thereby leading to gross mismanagement of the commission funds.
They accused her of directing the collection of Shs100 million which they had approved in the commission meeting and the said money was to be used as kickbacks for individuals who worked hard for passing of the commission budget in 2018/19.
“It was paid and collected through individual bank accounts. It was collected and handed over to her at Kampala International University (KIU), Kansanga on 7th March 2019,” the whistleblower said. Despite being chairperson of the commission, Mrs Ntambi is averred to have forced her secretaries to pay her as consultant in production of various reports.
“The money was paid to Prof. Sunday Nicholas Olwor (Shs 14M), Kamahoro Enid (Shs 13M), Nassanga Sarah (Shs 5M), Atukunda Susan (Shs 6M), Mugisha James (Shs 12M), Kwesiga Ronnie (Shs 12M), Kwesiga Ronnie (Shs 10.55M), Sarah Nassanga (Shs 9M), Kwihangana Manasseh(Shs 13M), Prof. Sunday Nicholas Olwor (Shs 9.8M), Kwesiga Ronnie (Shs 9M) and sylvia Muwebwa Ntambi (Shs 13M),” payment slips indicate.
She is also accused of irregular approval of allowances of various members of the commission, using commission vehicle for doing private businesses, irregular recruitment of staff without embracing commission procedures. It is said that she illegally recruited Betty Namazzi, Juma Waira and Petau Isabirye Babirye.
However, charges against the rest of the accused, — who were also granted bail – remain.