Anglican Bishops of West Lango and the Diocese of Northern Uganda have reported the District Education Officers (DEOs) and Chief Administrative Officers (CAOs) to Lt Col. Edith Nakalema, the head of State House Anti-Corruption Unit.
The Bishops want the CAOs and DEOs probed for frustrating their efforts to investigate matters in relation to foundation bodies.
This was during last week’s stakeholder meeting organized by Edith Nakalema with DEOs and CAOs and staff from the Ministry of Education following conflicts over land ownership and foundation bodies.
In the meeting, the CAOs and DEOs of the districts of Amuru, Nwoya, Gulu and Omoro in the Diocese of Northern Uganda and four other districts in West Lango that include Apac, Kwania, Oyam and Kole were not invited.
The Bishops from the two dioceses claim that several of their efforts to try and solve some of the conflicts have been frustrated by the technocrats at the districts.
Julius Caesar Nina, the Bishop of West Lango diocese says, 3-quarter of church land has been leased out by the Oyam district local government with so far 2 land titles given.
In Kwania, Nina claims that 7 acres of crops belonging to teachers of Aduku Seed Secondary School were destroyed by the community while in Oyam district, the ownership of 30 schools have all been tampered with by the technocrats.
“How can the district local government headed by the CAO agree to lease 3-quarter of church land to private investors and even go ahead and give land titles? You can’t tell me that they are not involved in some sort of corruption,” Nina wondered.
According to Nina, several efforts to have some of their concerns listened to and addressed from the districts to the Ministry of Education have been futile.
“We even went to the Ministry to seek clarity on our ownership but we didn’t get any concrete documents. One wonders what is happening with the education system of the country,” Nina further questioned.
Bishop Johnson Gakumba of the Diocese of Northern Uganda cites Alelele, Cwero, Otwee Public Primary Schools in the districts of Nwoya, Gulu and Amuru district as some of the schools which have issues over their ownerships.
Gakumba says, for the case of his diocese, the local leaders played a huge role in escalating the conflicts while the technocrats failed in their role to impartially intervene and solve the conflicts.
Both Nina and Gakumba claim that the CAOs and DEOs failed to reign in on the headteachers whom the DEOs accuse of altering the details even after noticing the difference.
“If you have noticed irregularities on details of school censorship, why didn’t you reign as either the CAO or the DEO? To whom did you report? So, for us we want the technocrats of the districts investigated for their role,” Bishop Gakumba questioned.
They now want the technocrats in the 7 districts investigated in their role as far as the conflict over ownership of schools is concerned.
“If you can call these technocrats to answer some of these queries, it would be good because the major reason why churches and schools were established are now being derailed by the people who should strengthen and support it more,” Bishop Gakumba told Edith Nakalema.
Ismael Mulindwa, the Director Basic and Secondary Education in the Ministry of Education and Sports says, they have been quite slow in handling some of the concerns being raised by the religious leaders.
He also blames the COVID-19 pandemic for having affected some of their interventions.
According to Mulindwa, they have also had a series of meetings with some of the religious leaders and stakeholders concerning their claims but no substantive resolution was made.
Lt. Col Edith Nakalema, the head of State House Anti-Corruption Unit says, an investigation will be launched following the complaint raised by the religious leaders.
Already 22 CAOs have been investigated in recent times by the State House Anti-Corruption unit.
Nakalema says, she has noticed laxity and assuming too much power by the technocrats. They should know what is happening in their districts, which is why they go ahead to undermine the religious leaders in their pursuit for justice and truth.
Prior, Nakalema had given until 16th of November this year for the Ministry of Education, CAOs and DEOs to solve issues that has seen the Catholic and Anglican Church conflicting over ownership of a number of schools.
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