Lwamafa, Obey run to Court of Appeal

Convicted former officials of ministry of Public Service have appealed against the judgement of the Anti-Corruption Court, which sentenced them to varying jail terms and ordered them to refund Shs50 billion of the lost money.

The ministry’s former permanent secretary, Jimmy Lwamafa, Christopher Obey (former principal accountant) and Mr Stephen Kiwanuka Kunsa (former commissioner for compensation department) were convicted this month for causing financial loss, abuse of office, false accounting, conspiracy to defraud and diversion of public funds, amounting to Shs88 billion.

They were accused of irregular budgeting of Shs88.2 billion as civil servants’ contributions to National Social Security Fund yet government workers are not required to contribute to NSSF.

In their notice of intention to appeal filed in the Court of Appeal, Lwamafa, Obey and Kunsa say they are dissatisfied with the High Court judgement and had resolved to challenge it.

The trio are yet to file the reasons why they think the Court of Appeal should overturn the judgement of the Anti-Corruption Court.

They are waiting to receive certified copy of the judgement of the Anti-Corruption Court to draft the reasons.

The court sentenced Lwamafa to seven years, Kunsa (five years) and Obey (10 years) and for their role in the scam and ordered them to refund to government Shs50 billion of the plundered money.

Court observed that the scheme to steal the Shs88.2b was hatched in the public service ministry, smoothened in finance ministry and executed in Cairo Bank where the money was finally paid out to ghost pensioners.

The convicts are currently serving their sentence at Luzira prison.

Meanwhile, the three convicts are still battling other cases before Justice Margaret Tibulya of the Anti-Corruption Court for alleged fraudulent payment of Shs15.4 billion to a city lawyer Mr Bob Kasango in purported legal costs.
They are jointly charged with Mr Kasango and a court clerk Milton Mutegeya.

SOURCE: Daily Monitor