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    INSIDE STORY: How Trade PS Ssali Floored Ruthless City Tycoon, Top Gov’t Officials Who Wanted Her Out Over Multibillion Deals…



    Secretary to Treasury Ramathan Ggoobi (L) and Geraldine Ssali (R)

    In her letter dated 26th October, 2023 to Permanent Secretary and also the Secretary to Treasury Ramathan Ggoobi, the Permanent Secretary Ministry of Public Service and also Secretary to cabinet Lucy Nakyobe directed that Geraldine Ssali Busuulwa, the Permanent Secretary Ministry of Trade, Industries and Cooperatives (MTIC) be reinstated with full powers in her offices.

    Nakyobe Cited President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni’s letter dated 22nd October, 2023 concerning Ssali’s situation by decreasing her powers in the ministry in which she is the accounting officer.

    Few weeks back, working on the directives of the parliamentary Committee on Trade chaired by Mwine Mpaka, Ggoobi replaced Ssali as the accounting officer with her Under Secretary Oyo Andima.

    Sources close to Ssali revealed that since then, she has been having clandestine meetings to explain herself before people she knows have powers to influence and have Ggoobi’s decision reversed.

    Sources said that among the people Ssali pleaded with was Gen. Salim Saleh president Museveni’s younger brother and also one of his chief advisors.

    Sources divulged that Ssali explained to Gen. Saleh that she is being tormented because she saved government from losing billions of shillings in a deal she refused.

    Sources said that Museveni’s letter was based on Gen. Saleh’s advice who realised that Ssali’s decision indeed saved the government from losing billions of shillings.

    Sources claim that Ssali together with Ggoobi are among the many top government officials who Gen. Saleh recommended to be given jobs in President Museveni’s government.

    Ssali’s reinstatement is a big blow to a certain ruthless tycoon who wanted the Trade ministry to rent on his building in Kampala, a deal where he was expecting to collect billions of money each year.

    The said tycoon is known to be in cahoots with some members of the deep state who have severally used such schemes to put down government officers who tried to frustrate their business deals with government.

    Before Ssali, their recent victim was Sylvia Muwebwa Ntambi, the Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC) who was humiliated and charged in Courts of law with offences related to corruption and embezzlement of public funds.

    In 2020, Ntambi was charged before the Anti-Corruption Court on allegations of conspiring to defraud the government of Uganda a sum of Uganda Shillings thirty five million, Two Thousand (Shs. 35,002,000).

    Ntambi was also charged with abuse of office when she neglected her duty of directing the affairs and administration as the chairperson of the Commission thereby leading to gross mismanagement of the Commission’s funds.

    She was immediately interdicted on the instructions of the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) but in 2021.

    The same DPP dropped charges against her and highly placed sources in the Ministry of Finance Planning and Economic Development told theGrapevine that all of Ntambi’s troubles started when she stopped the commission from renting on one of the newly completed building belonging to this same malicious tycoon in town who has a lot of buildings.

    Back to Ssali, her troubles stem from Mwine’s committee investigation which established that she mismanaged public money.

    However, in her defense, Ssali explained that her ministry received a Supplementary Budget of Shs5bn meant to procure office space for the ministry offices for rent because Farmer’s House, a building which currently houses the ministry, was considered overly dilapidated.

    She further explained that during the financial year 2022-23, the ministry received Shs.3bn and was added to Shs5bn which totaled Shs.8bn for rent in that particular year.

    She added that the ministry however had prior justified that there was need for a further Shs3bn for partitioning and Shs2bn for furniture and after weighing all the options, they decided to renovate Farmer’s House at a much lesser cost than incurring recurrent costs on rent annually.

    She disclosed that she was even given clearance by the Solicitor General to proceed with renovating Farmer’s house.

    She explained that currently, government is undertaking a rationalization of government agencies programmes with the main goal of cutting down costs like rent.

    So, instead of taking the ministry to a new building where government would be spending huge sums of money monthly, she took the option of renovating farmer’s house which would help government save a lot of money.

    She added that her ministry was going to be home to an additional three government agencies and these are Uganda Warehouse Receipting Systems Authority, Uganda Export Promotions Board and Uganda Free Zones Authority.

    Sources told theGrapevine that it is this information that Ssali re-laid to Gen. Saleh explaining why she was being fought.

    This is not the first time that Ssali is having trouble with individuals in the Deep State.

    Around 2017, when she was still Deputy Managing Director at National Social Security Fund (NSSF), Ssali developed a misunderstanding with her then Boss Richard Byarugaba.

    Ssali disclosed that the way Byarugaba ran the pension Fund was questionable. This put her into a lot of trouble with the big guns in NSSF and Ministry of Finance and she ended up losing her Job.

    By the time she was fired, Ssali had exhibited high performance at the pension fund according to the IGG findings.

    This performance was manifested in the surplus that was realized in the Fund’s financial receipts in 2014 when she was Ag MD whereby after paying members an interest of 13%, the NSSF had excess liquidity of 272bn.

    Moreover this was at a time most of the top NSSF managers were holding positions in acting capacity without being confirmed. She was the Acting MD; Kasirye Joseph was Ag head of HRM and was later replaced by Eseza Byakika who also was in acting capacity.

    Fast forward in 2023, Byarugaba was booted from the Job of MD NSSF after a battle with his line minister Betty Amongi who accused him mismanaging the fund.

    The IGG also implicated him on embezzlement, Corruption and mismanagement of the pension fund. However, the IGG later exonerated him.

    After being let loose by the IGG, Byarugaba ran to court challenging the decision to fire him and the case is still pending hearing.


    By Sengooba Alirabaki



    Stanbic Bank In Trouble, Client Petitions Court After She Was Defrauded Of Shs68m Via Flexi Pay…



    Stanbic Bank CEO Anne Jjuuko whose bank is under fire

    Nakku Joweria a resident of Kyebando has sued Stanbic Bank Uganda limited for failing in its duty of protecting her saving account leading to defrauding her of shillings 68 million which was withdrawn from her account in a period of 24 hours through Flexi pay an application she had never registered for.

    In a court case filed before the Commercial division of the High Court of Uganda and coming up for directions in the registrar Christa Namutebi’s chambers, on the 24th June, 2024 at 9:40am, Nakku Joweria through his lawyers of Kimanje Nsibambi Advocates contends that between 7th and 8th February, 2023, there was unauthorized withdrawal of 68 million shillings from her savings account No. 903000026244 via the Flexi Pay Banking, a platform of Stanbic Bank and a total of 28 unauthorized transactions were conducted by fraudsters who fraudulently accessed her account undetected by the bank.

    She questions how a savings account which had a transaction limit was significantly exceeded during the unauthorized and undetected fraudulent transactions which led to her losing her’ money.

    “Our client has been a loyal client of Stanbic bank since 2001 way before the implementation of the FlexiPay system and at no point did she sign up for or activate the flexi pay on her savings account. The 28 unauthorized withdrawals from our clients account using four unknown Airtel lines raises serious questions and/ or lapses on the part of the bank for which we hold the bank specifically liable for the loss since it was in a better position to detect and prevent this fraud had it exercised reasonable care to detect these suspicious 28 unauthorized transactions that took place within 24 hours on a savings account that was rarely operated by our client,” reads the documents in parts.

    She also questions the effectiveness of the bank’s authentication protocols with their flexi pay system, effectiveness of the transaction monitoring to the extent of allowing 28 unauthorized transactions within 24 hours using four unknown Airtel lines and significantly exceeding the account limit.

    Nakku wants court to direct Stanbic Bank to reimburse 68 million to her account that was fraudulently withdrawn and pay her the costs and damages.

    On 6th February 2023, Nakku Joweria lost her phones to the robbers on her way to work at around 9pm. She reported the incident to police at 9am and to the telecom companies on the 7th February 2023.

    However, the telecom companies MTN and Airtel couldn’t process the new simcards because she had misplaced her original National Identity card.

    The robbers used her MTN number to open up a wallet on the Flexi pay which number had four other Airtel numbers that don’t belong to her which they used to make 28 unauthorized withdraws of 68 million shillings from her Stanbic bank saving account on the 7th and 8th February in a space of only 24 hours.

    When she went to withdraw some money from her account on the 6th, March 2023 that’s when she realized that her money was fraudulently withdrawn from her account.

    She wrote to the bank manager complaining about the matter and the bank promised to do thorough investigations to reveal how the money was withdrawn by the fraudsters.

    Through her lawyers of Kimanje Nsibambi Advocates, she wrote a demand notice to Stanbic Bank manager to reimburse her money since it was their weakness and fault for failure to efficiently protect her account.

    The bank through Twine Arnold, the senior legal advisor, Risk and Dispute Management wrote back with an out of court settlement request.

    However, the bank had proposed to reimburse only 34 million out of the 68 million on the premise that the settlement shall not be taken as admission of liability by any of the parties, a proposal she rejected and instead thought for legal redress in the commercial court.


    By Sengooba Alirabaki


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    Minister Kabanda Panics As Traders Plan To Front Ssekitto To Battle Her For Kampala Central MP Seat…



    KACITA'S Issa Ssekitto and Minister Minsa Kabanda

    Kampala City Traders Association (KACITA) spokesperson Issa Ssekitto has confirmed that come 2026, he is pondering contesting for the position of Kampala Central Division Member of Parliament as an independent.

    Ssekitto revealed that his decision was based on the number of requests he has received from desperate traders who think that the only way to fight bad policies and laws made against them is to have their own in the parliament to argue their case.

    It should be noted that when traders met President Museveni in May 2024 at Kololo independence ground, they warned legislators in parliament who have been passing laws against them that they are going to sponsor their own candidates against them come 2026.

    They claimed that the legislators and other leaders who they showered with votes in the previous elections have betrayed them and it is high time they take over the country’s leadership.

    Sources inside KACITA told theGrapevine that Nagenda Musoke their chairperson also plans to stand for a Member of Parliament in one of the constituents in Mukono district.

    John Kabanda also plans to stand as councilor representing Kampala Central Division on the Lord Mayor’s Council.

    The traders insist that Kampala city and Metropolitan senior minister Hajjat Minsa Kabanda has not helped them as a minister and accuse her of sidelining with their tormentors, especially the Uganda Revenue Authority (URA).

    Since 2023, Minister Kabanda has been conducting clandestine political mobilization to replace Muhammad Nsereko who declared that he is not going to contest in 2026.

    Because of Kabanda’s declaration, Bobi Wine’s elder brother Fred Nyanzi Ssentamu shifted his interest from contesting for Kampala Central MP Seat to Lord Mayor fearing that chances are high that Kabanda will defeat him.

    Traders want parliament to remove EFRIS and reduce taxes on commodities especially imported items.

    However, President Museveni assured them that his government will not accept their prayers because they are against the country’s development.


    By Hadijjah Namagembe


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    Bank Bosses In Trouble For Allowing Sanctioned M7 Gov’t Official To Access Money On Her Account..



    L-R: Agnes Nandutu, Goretti Kitutu and Speaker Anita Among were all recently sanctioned

    The Western powers have kicked off investigation into allegations that bank bosses in Kampala allowed President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni’s sanctioned government officials to access and use their financial services.

    Sources in one of the top banks intimated to theGrapevine that their boss has been summoned at their bank headquarters in the United Kingdom to record a statement detailing how the incident happened and why.

    Sources claim that this senior government official was informed early that President Museveni was briefed about her sanctions and when she asked her lawyers what the sanctions meant, they quickly advised her with immediate effect to rush to the bank and withdraw her money which she did.

    “She came herself and withdrew her money and went with it, but we don’t know whether our bosses were already informed about the sanctions,” a source said.

    This bank source narrated to us a scenario where the former Inspector General of Police Gen. Edward Kale Kayihura’s close relative was denied the opportunity to open a bank account in their bank on grounds that his father was sanctioned and their bank was not allowed to do any financial business with him.

    Recently, the State Minister for Lands Dr. Sam Mayanja revealed that retired High Court Judge Moses Mukiibi told him that because of the sanctions, he could no longer access his money in the banks.

    He added that they asked President Museveni to intervene.

    However, the judiciary last week issued a statement noting that Justice Mukiibi is receiving his retirement benefits as a retired judge.

    Veteran journalist Joseph Tamale Mirundi explained that western powers give a sanctioned official six months to clear whatever they have in their respective countries including repatriating their relatives from their countries.

    But Alex Waiswa Mufumbiro, the National Unity Platform (NUP) deputy spokesperson said that the sanctions take immediate effect and all the money on bank accounts and properties of the sanctioned persons in foreign countries is frozen immediately when the sanctions are announced.

    Mufumbiro’s explanation was supported by a powerful security officer who told theGrapevine that recently, President Museveni posted one of his sanctioned security chief to one of the neighbouring countries; however this officer failed to access his bank account and when he tried to fix his ATM card into the ATM machine, it was swallowed by the machine and he immediately called Museveni pleading with him to withdraw him from the said country.

    Recently, the United Kingdom sanctioned Annet Anita Among the speakers of parliament, Agnes Nandutu the former State Minister for Karamoja affairs and Mary Goretti Kitutu the former senior minister for Karamoja affairs.

    Other government officials who were sanctioned include; Gen. Kayihura, Lt. Gen. Peter Elwelu, Maj. Gen. Abel Kandiho, Maj. Gen. Sabiiti Muzeyi, Maj. Gen. Don Nabasa and a number of others including members of parliament.


    By Sengooba Alirabaki


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