Gulu City councillors are struggling with the online declaration
of their wealth to the Inspectorate of Government (IG).
The IG recently directed all public officers in the country including elected
leaders from Chairperson LCIII to make a declaration of their wealth or poverty
before August 7, 2021.
However, the councillors in Gulu City have complained of the process of filling
the online forms, lack of internet and access to computers, and lack of updated
information on the city.
The unfamiliarity with the online system and reluctance by the councillors has
also affected the process.
Caroline Rose Adong, the Councilor representing Women Disabilities who also
doubles as the Secretary for Works and Technical Services says that she has
been trying to enter her data but has constantly failed as the online system
rejects her details and also lacks updated information about the newly created
Adong added that the lack of access to computers and the internet has also hindered
declaration of wealth yet the deadline will expire this week.
She appealed to the IG to update the online system with the details of Gulu
City or provide them with forms that they can fill and return to their
Florence Lalam, the Councilor representing women of Laroo-Pece North in the Laroo-Pece
division says that she is unaware of the operation of the system since as councillors
in the new city they were not oriented about its operation even after assuming
Joyce Alima Winny, the Gulu City Speaker equally says she is unaware of the
operation of the system, she noted that she is also reluctant in the wealth
declaration because she is unaware of its urgency and relevance.
Alima noted that the council is aware of the challenges being experienced by
the councillors. She asked the councillors to opt for forms from the IG office
and enter their details manually.
Jane Akwero, the Human Resource Officer for Gulu City blamed the challenges on
failure by the government to update the information about Gulu City and delayed
orientation of the councillors.
However, Geoffrey Matovu, the Northern Regional Inspectorate of Government
Officer confirmed the failure of the online registration system and technical
challenges, challenges in accessing the internet and computers, slow internet,
and the lack of updated Gulu City details on the system.
He added that others affected also include teachers, staff in lower health facilities,
and public officers in the rural areas.
Matovu advised the councillors to pick forms from their respective IG focal
person, fill and return them to the IG office.
//Cue in: ‘’from where I …
Cue out: …access the system.’’//
While launching the online wealth declaration system last year, Deputy IGG
George Bamugereire warned that any leader who fails to declare their wealth
within three months of appointment faces being penalized. The act
set a fine of 400,000 Shillings per month for the initial three months of
non-submission of the declaration.
After the initial three months, the declarant is expected to pay a fine not
exceeding Shillings 800,000 per month.
The Leadership Conduct Act was designed to increase transparency and curb
corruption among senior public officials.
Emmy Daniel Ojara is a young journalist and has been practicing since 2013, during which he covered land rights violation in the contested Apaa and Lakang in Amuru as his first take ups while at Gulu Fm, Favor Fm and later Paidha Fm and Speak Fm where he is still attached.
Human rights abuses and denied access to land by security and government agencies has been the major aftermath of the contest over the lands. The underprivileged such as women, children and the elderly faced challenges in accessing soc