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Mbarara RCC Halts Trader's Fundraising Campaign for Fire Truck Purchase :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Mbarara RCC Halts Trader's Fundraising Campaign for Fire Truck Purchase

Musa Barugahare, the Publicity Secretary of the Association, stated that Mwijuka removed some executive members from the WhatsApp group that had been created for transparency and accountability, following their inquiries about the whereabouts of the raised funds.
THe Invitation card to contribute towards buying fire fighting equipment
Robert Kanusu, the Deputy Mbarara City Northern Division Resident City Commissioner-RCC has suspended the fundraising drive initiated by Mbarara city traders to procure a fire truck. The campaign, known as "Enkoni Y’nyine Eka," was launched in August by the traders, united under the Mbarara City Traders Association (MBACITA).

This initiative came in response to a devastating fire outbreak along Maj Victor Bwana road that resulted in substantial damage to timber and timber products valued at billions of Shillings. The traders aimed to raise more than Shillings 148 million within 90 days to purchase a firefighting truck, with the goal of improving their ability to respond to fire incidents promptly and minimize damages.

In the past year, Mbarara City had witnessed three fire outbreaks, leading to the destruction of two schools and numerous timber stalls. The suspension of the fundraising campaign comes after complaints were raised by traders and some executive members of MBACITA against the Association Chairperson, Simon Sezi Mwijuka, for failing to account for the money that had been raised so far.

Musa Barugahare, the Publicity Secretary of the Association, stated that Mwijuka removed some executive members from the WhatsApp group that had been created for transparency and accountability, following their inquiries about the whereabouts of the raised funds. Provia Tubenawe, the women's representative on the executive committee, questioned the need for opening a new bank account in Stanbic Bank when the association already had an existing account with the same bank.

Upon suspending the fundraising drive, Kanusu directed the Mbarara City Police Commander to launch an investigation into the entire fundraising process. The investigation would cover the amount raised, its sources, and its current whereabouts. He warned that if any fraudulent activity was discovered, Mwijuka would face prosecution. Kanusu also requested Mwijuka to disassociate his office from the fundraising drive. 

He emphasized that the use of his office, contacts on the organizing committee, and publications on various promotional materials without his consent were both criminal and malicious. Mwijuka apologized for using the RCC's office and assured him that it was done without any malicious intentions. He promised to withdraw the attachment used. When asked to provide details about the amount raised and its current location, Mwijuka requested some time to document the information.

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