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Teacher Who Reported Overpayment Goes Months Without Salary :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Teacher Who Reported Overpayment Goes Months Without Salary

Mulumba recounts that his payment woes began in 2022 when he endured a harrowing six-month stretch without receiving his rightful earnings. But in January this year, a substantial deposit of over 22 million Shillings suddenly appeared on his personal account.
08 Sep 2023 10:05
Taddeo Mulumba, a tutor at the Jinja-based Ophthalmic College of Health Services

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Taddeo Mulumba, a tutor at the Jinja-based Ophthalmic College of Health Services has found himself entangled in a perplexing salary predicament, going for months without pay after reporting an anomaly in his accounts.

Mulumba recounts that his payment woes began in 2022 when he endured a harrowing six-month stretch without receiving his rightful earnings. But in January this year, a substantial deposit of over 22 million Shillings suddenly appeared on his personal account. 

The following month he received another seven million Shillings which he naively believed to be the end of his woes.

//Cue in; “Actually it took...

Cue out...months or what?”//   

However, Upon scrutinizing his pay slips, Mulumba made a startling discovery—he had been overpaid and ‘mistakenly’ shifted to a higher pay grade, reserved for principals. In his own words, "I realized this was a grave anomaly that needed reporting."

//Cue in; “Now, when I...

Cue out...requesting for corrections.”// With a career spanning back to the 1980s, Mulumba harboured concerns that this peculiarity could jeopardize his retirement benefits, expected in 2025. "I had a nagging suspicion that this unexpected turn of events might come back to haunt me in the long run, " he disclosed.

He decided to report the issue to the Human Resources office, aware that such over-payment disputes were a rarity. The officials acknowledged the discrepancy and assured him they would rectify it. They went further to reassure him that he need not repay the excess funds since the government owed him arrears.

However, February of the same year ushered in a fresh wave of frustration. Instead of promptly rectifying the situation and returning him to his rightful pay scale, Mulumba's name mysteriously vanished from the payroll. Since that unfortunate turn of events, he had not received a single cent.

//Cue in; “It went off...

Cue out...February to June.”//   

Mulumba’s predicament became a public debate at the second National Health Professional’s Education and Training Conference that has been ongoing in Entebbe. 

When the matter was raised, most of the attendees were surprised that someone who had spent months without payment reported that he was overpaid. However, they also wondered why someone who did such a good thing was repaid by starving him of payment for months.

“The payroll has a lot of issues, some of these issues are not innocent as they are orchestrated by authorities above as they play their games. There are a lot of issues on that payroll that need to be addressed,” one of the tutors at the conference commented.


When addressing the concern in the presence of health professionals, Raymond Pedo, the Principal Human Resources Officer at the Ministry of Education, expressed appreciation to Mulumba for raising the issue of excessive compensation and acknowledged the challenges with the payroll system. 

Regarding Mulumba's specific situation, he explained that an error occurred during the migration of the payroll from Jinja City to the ministry. 

"In his case, he was originally classified as a Principal Tutor, but an error may have occurred during the migration process, and he was mistakenly categorized as a Principal. We have rectified this issue and corrected his salary scale accordingly,” he said. 

He reported that he believed the matter had been resolved satisfactorily and emphasized that if Mulumba insisted on having unresolved issues, such as missed salary payments, he was welcome to return to the ministry for a reassessment of his concerns. 

"Following the overpayment, instead of recovering the excess funds from him, we had to redistribute them to cover his salary for the last financial period, including some little funds owed to him and he was clearly told that this would be paid later as arrears. We provided a detailed explanation of these actions, but if Mulumba feels there are unresolved issues, he is welcome to return and have his case reexamined," Pedo added. 

But, Mulumba’s unsettling incident is not an isolated case. An audit general report has revealed that the government suffered significant losses amounting to 33 billion Shillings due to payroll irregularities in the previous financial year, 2021/2022. These losses encompassed payments to ineligible teachers, salary overpayments, pension discrepancies, and erroneous payments to retired, transferred, deceased, or absent staff.

The report specifically highlights that 19 billion Shillings were squandered through the payment of salaries to ineligible teachers across 129 local governments, painting a grim picture of systemic financial mismanagement within the education sector. 

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