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Pensioner Faces 23-Year Repayment for UGX 16M Mistake :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Pensioner Faces 23-Year Repayment for UGX 16M Mistake

Prossy Kasiko, the principal human resource officer of Kamuli District, admitted to approving the overpayment, which was subsequently endorsed by the chief administrative officer, Tappy Namulondo.
James Isabirye, a 62-year-old pensioner from Kamuli district local government, faces the daunting task of repaying Shillings 16 Million, which was mistakenly deposited into his account during the 2021/2022 financial year. This revelation came to light during a faceoff between Kamuli District local government officials and legislators from the local government public accounts committee. 

An audit query revealed an overpayment of Shillings 17.4 Million to three pensioners, with Shillings 16 Million inadvertently credited to Isabirye's account. Prossy Kasiko, the principal human resource officer of Kamuli District, admitted to approving the overpayment, which was subsequently endorsed by the chief administrative officer, Tappy Namulondo. Kasiko explained that Isabirye had pension arrears of Shillings 1.2 Million, but due to a clerical error, he received Shillings 16 Million Shillings.

He explained that they made efforts to engage Isabirye to return the excess funds, but he had already invested the money in his personal business ventures, with no other sources of income available. Isabirye argued that when he received the money in his account, he believed it was a token of appreciation from the government for his 38 years of diligent service without access to fringe benefits.

He also noted that the district had delayed remitting his pension fees for two years, and the lump sum payment was a welcome relief. Namulondo pointed out that Isabirye's monthly pension was Shillings 114,000, and only half of it could be deducted from his account each month, leaving no immediate option for recovering the money. Noah Mutebi, acting PAC chairperson and Nakasongola MP, raised questions about why the accounting officers did not block the transaction for seven days, given their awareness of the mistake, before Isabirye withdrew the funds. 

Mutebi directed detectives to investigate the possibility of collusion between Isabirye and the accounting officers to defraud the government, considering his age and inability to repay the funds. Mutebi also stated that the committee members would engage various government agencies to explore ways of recovering the lost funds from the implicated accounting officers, with the aim of preventing future fraud incidents.

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