Cooperatives & Communities

Bitter lesson as Mbale City officer refunds PDM money

MBALE-The Mbale City production officer Dr. Simon Massa has refunded Shs 8 million that was meant to pay members on the city’s Parish Development Committees [PDCs].

Dr Simon Massa, who is also the Mbale City Parish Development Model [PDM] focal point person, was arrested last Thursday during a meeting at Mbale City Council Hall on the orders of Jovrine Kaliisa Kyomukama, the PDM Deputy national director.

Massa handed over the recovered money at Mbale City Central Police Station on Friday evening before he was released on police bond.

At the time of his arrest, Massa was accused of corruption, embezzlement and sabotaging the PDM programme in the city.

The Elgon regional police spokesperson, Rogers Taitika, confirmed the suspect [Massa] had been in their custody.

“We arrested him on orders of Kaliisa. The suspect was detained on charges of embezzlement, corruption and sabotaging PDM programme,” Taitika said.

He said the investigations were still ongoing although Massa has refunded the money, with the security committee and the State House Anti-Corruption Unit (SHACU) involved in the investigations.

The Mbale Resident City Commissioner, John Rex Aachila, when contacted confirmed that Massa had refunded the money.

Aachila said,” I am glad that we have recovered money for the people of Mbale city that was stolen. The suspect is now on police bond as investigations go on.”

According to officials, the money was meant to pay PDCs who participated in the recent training but they were not paid.

Kaliisa said the official’s arrest followed several complaints raised by PDM beneficiaries and leaders.

“We arrested Dr. Massa after failing to account for the PDM money. We have been receiving complaints from Mbale City,” Kaliisa said.

PDM is a new poverty alleviation programme that government has rolled out to get 3.5 million households still in subsistence farming into the money economy.

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