Uganda: Minister Bahati Told Me to Transfer Ministry Offices From Goverment Building to Shs8b Kingdom Kampala Building-PS Ssali

The Parliamentary Committee on Trade, Tourism and Industry has tasked the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Cooperative Geraldine Ssali to clarify the claims that some Ministers were involved in the attempted deal to transfer the Ministry headquarters from a government building at Farmers House to a rented building at Kingdom House.

But according to Ssali, it was the State Minister for Industries David Bahati who told her that Farmer’s House had been condemned hence the need to have the ministry relocated to the Kingdom Kampala building or King Ceaser Plaza.

The Parliamentary Committee on Trade, Tourism and Industry puts officials from three Ministries in relation to the funds meant for the relocation of the Ministry of Trade headquarters and the procurements of the five vehicles for the Ministers under the Ministry of Trade.

The officials were from the Ministries of Works and Transport, of Finance and the Ministry of Trade were ed by Permanent Secretary Geraldine Ssali.

The Chairperson of the Committee Mwine Mpaka first informed legislators that the office of CID has been directed to process a file for Tom Opio an office attendant at the Ministry of Trade as they wait for the guidance of the DPP.

The committee then tasked the Principal Assistant Secretary Everest Ahimbisibwe and former Head of Procurement Lapyem to explain the circumstances of the decision to shift the Ministry from the government building to privately rented premises that were going to cost the taxpayer Shs8b shillings per year.

In her submission, Permanent Secretary Geraldine Ssali told the committee that Minister David Bahati asked her to quicken the process of shifting the Ministry headquarters to a rented premise on her first day at the Ministry.

Ssali said her effort to get formal documents from the Managers of the two buildings was futile hence her decision to cancel the proposed deal.

In the same meeting, the Permanent Secretary also told the Committee that she landed on a document where some officials at the Ministry had asked for a supplementary of 20 billion shillings to renovate the Farmers House instead of the 6.2bn shillings that were recommended by the Ministry of Works.

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