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    Panic At Vision Group, M7 Directs Prosecution Of Top Journalists Over Shs3bn DGF Funds That Could Have Cost NRM Victory In Buganda…

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    A number of investigative journalists at Uganda’s leading media house Vision Group are in panic after president Yoweri Museveni’s directive to have them investigated.

    Multiple credible sources at Vision group have intimated to theGrapevine that it all started a few days to 2021 general elections when embattled Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Robert Kabushenga applied for an interview with the National Resistance Movement (NRM) party presidential candidate Yoweri Tibuhaburwa Museveni through Judith Nabakooba, the information minister.

    Sources disclosed that Museveni accepted the interview after being promised that it was going to be published on all vision group outlets which include: Bukedde newspaper, the New Vision, Bukedde 1 & 2 Televisions, Bukedde radio, Urban television among others.

    Sources divulged that the Vision group journalists were supposed to be led by Kabushenga himself, others were; Barbra Kaija, the Editor in Chief of the New Vision, Bukedde newspaper editor Richard Kayira Ssalongo, Bukedde TV’s Charles Kalooli Sseruga Matovu commonly knowns as Munnakyalo, New Vision writer David Lumu and some Photojournalists.

    Sources said that on the day of the interview, Museveni himself made a phone call to Nabakooba directing her that when she is coming for the interview, she should not come with Kabushenga because he doesn’t want to look at him.

    “Kabushenga was stopped on the way, that’s why there was a lot of fear among journalists apart from Seruga who is in good books with the president because of his maturity in journalism,” a source said.

    He added that since then, Kabushenga started planning how to jump out of his two year contract which was just awarded to him.

    INTELLIGENCE REPORT PINS KABUSHENGA

    Sources revealed that before the elections, President Museveni received a political intelligence report from different intelligence organisations predicting his loss in Buganda.

    Credible sources in the State House revealed that among the factors given to Museveni for his impending loss was the bad publicity from certain Vision group media outlets like Bukedde Television, Bukedde newspaper and Bukedde radio.

    Source added that Museveni was told that programmes like Fayiro kumeeza which is presented by Richard Kayira, Agataliiko nfuufu news programme and some frequently stage managed investigations on most of their electronic media platforms were killing his votes.

    Sources said that Museveni was told that in some of those programmes, government was put in bad light and portraying some of his officers and men as facilitators of violence.

    “It was intentional to show people from Western Uganda brutally evicting poor Baganda from their land, they made sure they don’t do any editing when showing how security operatives especially those from police and army allegedly brutalize people something security thinks was planned to cost Museveni victory in Buganda,” the source said.

    He added that the said Vision outlets continued to put Museveni’s government in bad light when they showed hospitals and other government institutions in very poor state which showed that the government had failed to deliver services to the natives who voted them into power five years ago.

    DGF’S SHS3BN CASH THAT COST M7 VICTORY IN BUGANDA

    Credible sources in State House further revealed that President Museveni received an intelligence report that foreigners were hiding in the Democratic Governance Facility (DGF), a non-government organization, to facilitate the downfall of his government through funding special content that puts his government in bad light.

    The report indicates that DGF entered a Shs3bn deal with New Vision’s Kabushenga to run investigative stories where poor communities are portrayed as being left out by government.

    Sources said that Journalists like Moses Walugembe, Paul Mayinja, Benon Nsubuga, Pius Kyanda, Nuhu Lukungu, Siraje Semugenyi and others were assigned on orders of Kabushenga to handle those stories which were aired out.

    “Journalists were heavily facilitated, equipped with modern gadgets like moving cameras some of which were planted on their eye glasses, they were given watches with cameras, notebooks with cameras, pens with cameras. They used those gadgets to expose government officers especially in the immigration and the entire internal affairs ministry,” the source narrated.

    He added that the huge Shs3bn project created bad blood among top journalists at vision group who started fighting each other.

    The intelligence report revealed that most of the DGF sponsored investigations were done in Buganda and the victims who testified in the said investigations were selected with a mission to expose Museveni’s government.

    Sources said that detectives concluded that the Shs3bn DGF project was about to raise people’s tempers against Museveni’s government and vote him out of power giving an advantage to National Unity Platform (NUP) presidential candidate Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu alias Bobi Wine.

    MUSEVENI DIRECTS PROSECUTION OF VISION’S TOP JOURNALISTS

    In his furious letter, using his executive powers as the president, after suspending the activities of DGF, the president also directed the Directorate of Criminal Investigation Department of the Uganda police, State House Anti-Corruption Unity commanded by the no nonsense Lt. Col. Edith Nakalema and the Directorate of Public Prosecution (DPP) to carry out further investigations.

    Sources allege that the President thinks that Kabushenga and other vision group journalists were working for the interests of foreigners who have of late become hostile and are threatening the peace and stability of the country.

    Detectives insist that there was also a lot of corruption in all DGF deals with New Vision.

    “On paper they are indicating that they have received Shs1.3bn but our investigations indicate that certain individuals especially those who cut the deal received Shs3bn and only delivered Shs1.3bn,” a seasoned detective disclosed.

    Sources at the State House Anti-corruption unit told theGrapevine that they have kicked off investigations into the matter and a number of top journalists are set to record statements starting with their boss Kabushenga and Kayira.

    It should be remembered that a few years back, a New Vision’s investigative journalist was arrested in connection with leaking state intelligence to foreign countries but he was released without being charged in Courts of Law.

    MUSEVENI DIRECTS NABAKOOBA TO SWEEP VISION GROUP CLEAN

    Sources added that President Museveni, basing on one of the intelligence reports has directed information Minister Judith Nabakooba to clean the vision group house from the top management.

    According to these sources, the exercise is going to take three months and a number of senior journalists especially in Bukedde TV, Bukedde Newspaper, Bukedde radio are likely to lose their jobs.

    “People like Kulubya, Kayira, Ssebbowa, that lugambo man Sseguya and others may be on their way out of New Vision, Mzee wants new blood there. People who will protect government interests,” the source recounted.

    TOP JOURNALISTS THINKING OF RUNNING INTO EXILE

    When the Grapevine contacted one of the implicated senior journalists at Vision group, he confirmed that there is a lot of panic at the station and some of their colleagues are pondering running into exile.

    “You know me very well, where are those huge billions of monies they are accusing me of eating? We were only paid in hundreds of shillings, not in millions, let them deal with our bosses, not poor foot soldiers like us,” the seasoned political reporter said.

     

    By Sengooba Alirabaki

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    CRIME

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

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    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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    MY MONEY

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

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    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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    CELEBRITY GOSSIP

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

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    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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