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11 NUSAF Animals Recovered from Local Leaders in Agago

The oxen and ox-ploughs worth 10.6 million Shillings were purchased two weeks ago to support vulnerable community members in Omiya Pacwa Sub-county under Tic ber, Abicelo Ox-traction and Rwot Omiyo groups.
Some of the ox-ploughs and oxens belonging to one of the groups benefiting under NUSAF3 in Omiya Pacwa Subcunty Agago district.

Audio 5

The Inspectorate of Government has recovered 11 head of cattle and five ox-ploughs that were illegally acquired by local leaders from the third phase of the Northern Uganda Social Action Fund project in Agago District.

This followed an impromptu visit by officials from the inspectorate's office in Gulu and Headquarters in Kampala after complaints raised by the Community Monitoring Group in the area highlighting the abuse of the project.

The oxen and ox-ploughs worth 10.6 million Shillings were purchased two weeks ago to support vulnerable community members in Omiya Pacwa Sub-county under Tic ber, Abicelo Ox-traction and Rwot Omiyo groups.

Victor Omoding, the NUSAF III Focal Point Officer at the Inspectorate of Government in Gulu told URN in an interview that they had received reports that area leaders in the sub-county had involved themselves as beneficiaries of the project and sidelined the actual beneficiaries.

The implicated leaders include Raymond Otim, the LCIII Chairperson of Omiya Pacwa who took one head of cattle, the LCII of Lojim Parish Dicken Odongpiny, who also took one cattle,  and the sub-county GISO Geoffrey Omony who took one cattle and gave another to his mother.

Others are the Omiya Pacwa LCV Councilor John Oloya who received two head of cattle and the councillor of Lojim parish Cicilio Otim who got three head of cattle. Omoding says the leaders, through influence peddling, received cattle and oxen at least from each of the groups for themselves and their close relatives.

//Cue in; “we have come…

Cue out…up missing out.”//

He says that through their intervention and fact-finding, they were able to recover 11 of the 12 animals illegally taken away by the local leaders and two primary school teachers. Omoding notes that the project is intended to benefit the poorest of the poor in the community and not leaders at both community and national levels.

Omoding adds that they are yet going to conduct more fact-finding on the implicated leaders especially the area Sub-county leaders, and the GISO who is currently on the run.

//Cue in; “ we have recovered…

Cue out… other two animals.”//

Nelson Mandela Okidi, a member of the Community Monitoring Group in Omiya Pacwa told URN in an interview that discrepancies in the project manifested when one of the treasurers in Abicelo Ox traction group missed out on getting an ox-plough despite being a committed member.

He notes that under each of the three groups comprising of 12 selected members, beneficiaries should have received one cattle each while an ox-plough is shared between two group members.

Luo//Cue in; “Koko ma tiye…

Cue out…Ogamo dyang aryo.”//

Thomas Ongom, a primary school teacher in Lojim Parish says the move to withdraw the animal and oxen he received under NUSAF III is unfair considering that private school teachers are currently not earning any salary.

//Cue in; “we are not….

Cue out… the situation for me.”//

Esther Angom Opiyo, the Abicelo Village Chairperson who had earlier benefited from a NUSAF community access road project, however, says LCI’s should be allowed to benefit from the project due to their low income and the key role, they play in the project implementation.

Luo//Cue in; “Won kom acel…

Cue out...wan wege komi.”//

The recovered animals and ox-ploughs are currently being kept at the sub-county headquarters pending redistribution to rightful beneficiaries. At least 500 million Shillings have been sunk in Omiya Pacwa sub-county under NUSAF III out of 6.6 billion Shillings, the district received from Office of the Prime Minister this year.