The Chairperson of the Parliamentary Committee on Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises (COSASE) Joel Ssenyonyi has come under fire from some sections of the public for reportedly witch-hunting Jennifer Bamuturaki, the Executive Director of Uganda Airlines.
The concerned Ugandans contend that the way Ssenyonyi is conducting the ongoing inquest into the Auditor General’s report portrays him as someone who has ulterior motives instead of seeking to execute his mandate as COSASE Chairperson.
This stems from the fact that Ssenyonyi on Tuesday wrote a letter to Bamuturaki, demanding that she appears before the COSASE to answer to allegations that she over invoiced a company called Abavater Group Limited, which was contracted to manage public relations and communications by Uganda Airlines.
According to Ssenyonyi, his intention was to investigate allegations that Bamuturaki inflated invoices for money that was paid to Abbavater for their services.
In effect, he demanded Bamuturaki to avail him with the following documents within the few hours in which he wrote the letter, without even giving her time to prepare the same;
The procurement budget, the procurement plan, Initiation Form 5, Copy of Solicitation Document, Record of Bid Issuing, Record of Bid Opening, Contract Committee’s Approval of Bid Document, Contract Committee’s Approval for Method of Procurement, Certified Copy of Minutes Evaluation, Certified Copy of Contracts Committee’s on Award, Approval from the Solicitor General, Appointment from the Contracts Manager, Certified Copy of the Signed Contract, among other documents.
It should however be noted that whereas Ssenyonyi demanded Bamuturaki to produce these documents before COSASE, it is important to note that under normal circumstances and audit procedures, for an Accounting Officer to produce such documents, he/she has to be given ample time to liaise with the concerned departmental heads to avail him/her with the same.
However, due to reasons and intentions best known to him, Ssenyonyi demanded that Bamuturaki produces the said documents when she appears before the Committee, which was yesterday, September 13th, yet he wrote the letter on Tuesday September 12th.
This has left many right-thing members of the public wondering whether Ssenyonyi aim at executing his duties transparently or he is fighting personal wars be self-gratification.
This is because one wonders why Ssenyonyi would overlook all procedure and instead decide to literally ambush Bamuturaki in such a manner.
This is because as a lawyer and Member of Parliament, Ssenyonyi is expected to know that the documents he is asking for require Bamuturaki to engage the various heads of departments and request each of them to bring what they have in order for her to compile a conclusive report.
Besides that, when you read Ssenyonyi’s invitation letter, it shows that their interface would rotate around the AG’s report, but the questions being asked are just random questions, not from the report, something that raises a lot of questions about his intentions!