Minister To Spend Easter In Jail For Distributing Roofing Sheets Meant For Communities To Relatives, Officials - 9jaflaver





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Minister To Spend Easter In Jail For Distributing Roofing Sheets Meant For Communities To Relatives, Officials



It is alleged that the minister distributed roofing materials meant for the vulnerable in the northeastern Karamoja region to her relatives and some other officials.

Mary Goretti Kitutu Kimono, a Ugandan cabinet minister, has been remanded in prison.

She was remanded in jail after being charged over a scandal involving the theft of thousands of metal roofing sheets.

It is alleged that the minister distributed roofing materials meant for the vulnerable in the northeastern Karamoja region to her relatives and some other officials.

Kitutu will remain in custody until next Wednesday, according to BBC News.

Kitutu, the minister for the region pleaded not guilty in court but was denied bail.

At least 10 other senior government figures are alleged to have received some of the stolen corrugated iron.

These include the vice-president, the prime minister, the parliamentary Speaker and other ministers, according to the inspector general of government.

Some of them told a parliamentary committee investigating the corruption scandal, involving 14,500 missing iron sheets, that they had not asked for them.

The prime minister has apologised and urged other officials to return the sheets.

Speaker Anita Among told the House that she had returned the ones she had received.

One minister was recently forced to remove some from the roof of his goat shed, local media reported.

Karamoja has for decades faced persistent droughts and flooding when it rains, leaving many in the semi-arid northeastern region dependent on aid.

Kitutu has been charged alongside her brother, Michael Naboya Kitutu, who pleaded not guilty to receiving 100 of the corrugated iron sheets.

“I have understood the charge and it’s not true,” Kitutu responded in court, speaking firmly.

The minister’s court appearance was highly anticipated. On arrival, she covered her head and face with a piece of cloth to shield herself from the clamouring media.

Her lawyer had applied for bail, arguing that she was a high-profile senior citizen, had medical complications and would not interfere with prosecution witnesses.

But the prosecution fought for her to remain in custody, telling the court that Kitutu had prevented her mother, in whose house some sheets were recovered, from recording a statement to the police.

Her sister-in-law, niece and daughter-in-law, all alleged to be involved in the scandal, are on the run.

She became an MP in 2016 and has held other cabinet posts, including the energy and minerals portfolios.

President Yoweri Museveni has called for the prosecution of all those involved.

No other officials have yet been charged over the scandal.







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