Members of Parliament on the Public Accounts Committee (Local Government) were left shocked when it was discovered that 20 teachers in Mpigi District illegally access the payroll and having been drawing salaries for the past seven years.
This led to a financial loss of Shs106 million. The committee chaired by Hon. Gilbert Olanya made met the district officials on Thursday, 17 August 2023 over the Auditor General’s queries for the Financial Year 2021/2022.
According to the Auditor General’s, the teachers accessed the payroll with forged appointment letters from the District Education Service Commission.
Olanya asked the Mpigi District Principal Human Resource Officer, Selestino Kaweesa why such anomalies were not addressed promptly.
“You were not acting, you were not stopping them and they continued getting that money for seven years. Why?” he asked.
Kaweesa said that the district officials only learnt about the illegality through the Auditor General’s report.
“When we received a copy of the report from the Auditor General, we wrote to police to carry out investigations but all the implicated teachers have disappeared and we cannot recover the money,” Kaweesa said.
He added that while the teachers are considered as ‘ghosts’, they had still taught in their respective schools.
“These people were there teaching in those respective schools and even the head teachers have made statements confirming that,” he said.
Hon. Abdul Mutumba (NRM, Kiboga West County) however, said that the culprits should be arrested and prosecuted.
“Forgery is a criminal case. The matter should be followed up with police. The teachers are residents of this community,” he said.
Mpigi District Chief Administrative Officer, Moses Kanyarutokye said that all the implicated teachers have been erased from the payroll.
The MPs warned that the district officials will be tasked to recover any funds lost, if such cases recur.
Source; Parliament of Uganda