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Former official of Labongo Tobacco Growers Cooperative Society arrested

KITGUM, June 6, 2024 – The former treasurer of Labongo Tobacco Growers Cooperative Society Limited in Kitgum district is in police detention for refusing to hand over office to his successor.

Solomon Oywa was arrested on Tuesday on the orders of Kitgum Resident District Commissioner, Jimmy Ssegawa Ebil.

Ebil said his office was forced to take action against Oywa after fruitless pleas from the cooperative’s new executive members, Kitgum District Commercial Officer, Alex Opira, for the former treasurer to hand over office keys.

It said Oywa immediately handed over the keys to the police at Kitgum Central Police Station, where he recorded a statement before being detained.

Oywa who had served in the position for seven years was expected to hand over office to Geoffrey Okello as the incoming treasurer for the cooperative following the elections held on August 31, 2022 but did not do so.

Walter Oyat, Chairperson of the cooperative, said Oywa’s failure to hand over office has made work challenging for the new executive members.

“My predecessor Okech Faustin, his vice-chairperson and secretary all handed over office  while the treasurer [Oywa] refused to hand over. He locked all the important documents of the cooperative in a safe in the office before going away with the keys,” Oyat said.

Labongo Tobacco Growers Cooperative Society Limited which was established in the 1970s has 300 members.

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