BBC ~ Gilbert Bukenya: Uganda ex-VP charged with CHOGM fraud

Posted June 16, 2011 by Ugandan Diaspora News Team in Featured ~ 3,316 views


Uganda’s former Vice-President Gilbert Bukenya has been charged with fraud. He denies that he benefited from a $3.9m (£2.4m) deal to supply cars to the 2007 Commonwealth summit in Kampala.

A parliamentary committee last year recommended he and other ministers be charged but MPs then voted to clear them.

Mr Bukenya was sacked in May, as part of a reshuffle in the wake of February’s elections.

The BBC’s Joshua Mmali in the capital, Kampala says the inspector general of government continued investigations into the case although MPs had decided to drop it.

A day after losing the vice-presidency, Mr Bukenya was confronted with the news that his file was due for prosecution, our reporter says.

He is accused of being responsible for the fraudulent procurement of luxury cars, which were used to transport dozens of heads of state during the 2007 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM).

Mr Bukenya chaired the cabinet team in charge of preparations for the event.

He was also charged with abuse of office, but replied: “Those charges are absolutely not true.”

He was granted a cash bail of $20,000 and will have to deposit his passport with the court.

Our reporter says the prosecution have asked for a further two weeks to complete investigations.

The hearing has now been adjourned until 30 June.

Mr Bukenya became an MP in 1996, ending his two-year tenure as the Dean of the School of Medicine at Makerere University.

Our reporter says that, before the February elections, in a contest which exposed serious rifts and acts of corruption in the ruling National Resistance Movement primaries, Mr Bukenya sought to be named NRM general secretary.

But he lost to Prime Minister Amama Mbabazi.

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