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Kalaki CAO in Trouble Over Stalled Projects :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Kalaki CAO in Trouble Over Stalled Projects

Christopher Okumu has been arrested for allegedly failing to take charge of several projects
Kalaki District Headquarters.

Audio 1

The Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) for Kalaki district, Christopher Okumu has been arrested for allegedly failing to take charge of several projects, resulting in huge financial losses in the district.

Some of the affected projects include the construction of the perimeter chain link fence at Kakure Seed School worth UGX. 800 million and the road works either stalled or failed to take off after the allocation of funds.  

Okumu allegedly failed to provide a detailed account to the Directorate of Ethics and Integrity at State House regarding the misallocation of funds for said projects.

Some of the projects include the construction of the Opilitok-Kaberpila Road [3.5KM] in Otuboi Sub-county during the FY 2022/2023 its money, UGX. 17M was diverted. Investigations revealed that the road development project was halted after one of the district officials misappropriated its funds.

The CAO is also accused of failing to provide pertinent information regarding the misuse of UGX. 350M intended for the restoration of the Abalanga-Imat-Amua-Surambaya Road in the 2021/2022 Financial Year. The said funds were reportedly misused by the engineers at the district.

Reports at the district indicate that there are discrepancies in the execution of the road works as they did not align with the specified Bill of Quantities and did not reflect the value for money. 

Some of the anomalies recorded include the collapse of the bridge linking Kalaki to Alebtong District, the absence of gravel surfacing on the road, and the lack of installed road signs.

During the interaction with the Directorate of Ethics and Integrity, Okumu failed to give a satisfactory explanation for the interdiction of Kalaki Town Clerk, Richard Eliau, and the Treasurer, James Opali. 

The duo was facing charges of alleged financial misconduct, embezzlement, and misappropriation of public funds, which negatively impacted service delivery.

The CAO is also facing trouble for allegedly underpaying service providers. For example, it was noted that the contractor, Ms. SAO Engineering Consultants Limited was paid only UGX 9,000,000 out of the allocated amount of UGX 20,300,000. 

In the FY 2020/2021, UGX 18,000,000 was set aside for a physical plan but only UGX 4,000,000 was disbursed to the contractor, MS. SAO Consultants Ltd, without any corresponding activities, resulting in UGX 14,000,000 being unutilized. Furthermore, funds allocated for office furniture amounting to UGX 2,800,000 in the FY 2020/2021 were never delivered, and the funds remain unaccounted for, among others. 

Ethics Minister Rose Lilly Akello told Journalists that the district has quite several challenges that require special attention.

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The team also arrested Kalaki District Education Officer, Omagor Kyalagire over alleged mismanagement of UGX 800 million meant for the construction of a chain-link fence at Kakure Seed School. 

It is reported that much as the district received UGX. 800 million, they awarded a contract worth only UGX. 452 million to the contractor.