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Difficult System, Corruption Hampering Asset Recovery: DPP

Edward Muhumuza, the Witness Protection and Victims Empowerment Department in the office of the DPP expresses worry that their objective for Asset recovery could not be achieved due to poor sensitization of the public by all relevant stakeholders.
17 Apr 2021 17:36
, John Baptist Asiimwe, Head of International Cooperation and Assets Recovery in the office of the DPP

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High corruption levels, difficult systems and poor sensitization are hampering the implementation of Asset Recovery, officials in the Directorate of Public Prosecution (DPP) have revealed.

Asset recovery is a legally ordered process of seizing assets, property, or money that has been associated with criminal activity. In Uganda, Asset Recovery is dominant in the Anti-Corruption Unit, Uganda Revenue Authority and Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA).  However, two years ago government moved to expand its implementation to cover all offences.

John Baptist Asiimwe, the Senior Assistant Director of Public Prosecutions and also the head of International Cooperation and Assets Recovery in the office of the DPP, says that the intention of extending Asset Recovery to offences is to make sure that once accused persons are convicted, the plaintiffs get compensation in terms of money to help them start a new life than only benefiting from the conviction of offenders.

He explains that applying Asset recovery to all cases can make engaging in crime very risky and expensive for the public. 

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Asiimwe however says that the implementation of Assets Recovery is being affected by some of the officers under the DPP who engage in corruption by receiving bribes to suffocate cases.

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Asiimwe also says that the Ugandan law that supports Assets Recovery only applies in form of a Conviction based system, where the convict is entitled to first, serve their sentences and later the DPP moves to seize their assets. As a result, convicts who have already served their sentences move fast to hide their assets making it difficult for the DPP to seize.

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Edward Muhumuza, the Witness Protection and Victims Empowerment Department in the office of the DPP expresses worry that their objective for Asset recovery could not be achieved due to poor sensitization of the public by all relevant stakeholders.

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James Mugisha, the Kabale District Principal Assistant Secretary and Adrine Asingwire, the Rubanda District Principal Assistant Secretary wondered how Asset Recovery can apply to a convict who has been declared bankrupt.

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Keywords

DPP