Log in
Free: The Observer Mobile App - Exclusive Content and Services

Activists petition court to 'expel' minister Kutesa from gov't

Minister Sam Kutesa

Minister Sam Kutesa

Two more activists have petitioned the High court (Civil Division) for orders to compel Foreign Affairs minister Sam Kutesa to vacate his office.

Sam Kyomuhendo and Ronald Tugume want court to declare that Kutesa is unfit to hold a public office over various bribery and corruption allegations. In his affidavit, Tugume states that while serving as the president of the United Nations Assembly in New York, Kutesa solicited and received a bribe of $500,000 (about Shs 1.8bn) around May 2016 and other things from former Hong Kong’s Home Affairs minister, Patrick Ho Chi Ping who has since been convicted and jailed. Ho also offered another $500,000 bribe to President Museveni around the same time. 

According to Tugume and evidence submitted in US courts, Kutesa received the bribe on May 6, 2016 from HSBC Bank in Hong Kong through an intermediary Deutsche Bank in the New York through to Stanbic bank in Uganda.

In exchange, Kutesa, promised to help Ho to access President Museveni and gain business advantages for China Energy Fund Committee (CEFC), a Shanghai-based multibillion-dollar conglomerate that operates internationally in multiple sectors, including oil, gas, and banking contrary to Ugandan laws.    

The applicants contend that the said bribe was characterised as a donation or contribution for a ‘foundation’ that Kutesa wished to launch such that the Chinese company would support the re-election campaign of Museveni whom the minister referred to as his brother-in-law. 

On his part, Ho emphasized that the energy company expected assistance from Kutesa with respect to ‘major projects’ ranging from infrastructure, energy, agriculture, finance and banking in Uganda. Kutesa then assured Ho that Museveni would work with the Chinese on various projects, including the potential sale of a ‘Ugandan bank’ to the energy company.

According to the US attorneys, Ho explicitly offered to “partner” with Kutesa and Museveni and/or their “family businesses,” making clear that both officials would share in CEFC China’s future profits. 

The applicants contend that Kutesa’s conduct contravenes some laws in the Constitution and the Leadership Code Act of 2002. They also state that Kutesa’s conduct compromises his integrity and is harmful to public good. The applicants also accuse the agents of the Ugandan attorney general who is also a respondent in the matter, of failing to investigate and prosecute Kutesa in as far as the law of equality is concerned. 

A US judge found Ho guilty on March 26, 2019 and sentenced him to three years in jail on two counts of International money laundering. Justice Lorreta .A. Preska also found Ho guilty of four counts of violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, FCPA by his actions. Ho has since appealed against the sentence citing poor health and good conduct while he was on remand. 

This is not the first time activists are suing Kutesa seeking a declaration that he is not fit to hold public office. On December 18, 2018, Brian Atuheire, a political activist filed a case seeking court to compel the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) to institute criminal charges against Kutesa.

This case is fixed for hearing before Justice Dr Andrew Bashaija on May 13. President Museveni has since admitted that indeed Kutesa received the money in question, but said the minister told him that he thought it was a gift.

Comments

+6 #1 Lakwena 2019-04-18 07:52
If Mr. M7 also received KITU KIDOGO (something small) from Mr. Patrick Ho; it means Tugume & Co. are selective in their petition and call for justice.

The petition should have included Mr. M7, and in order to compelled him also to resign with disgrace.

These guys are bloated and floating around like rotting fish. The most disgusting thing about them is that; with menace, they shamelessly want our salutation and respect.

Yet e.g., when I see and/or hear Mr. M7 and Kuteesa's lying, slimy and rotten voices, it is nauseating and revolting.

In other words, in order to regain our national dignity and international respect; Ugandans need a breath of fresh air from these heartless and soulless people.
Report to administrator
+6 #2 Rajab Kakyama 2019-04-18 08:19
If Museveni "agrees" to receiving the money as a "gift" then our dear President should be able to explain to the country of what "good deeds" was he receiving the so called "gift."

What had our President offered to Ho that deserved him a gift. Under the current circumstances, our country could be under "hostage."
Report to administrator
+3 #3 Remase 2019-04-18 16:35
Twajirwa ga kondo! M7, his family/relatives come to loot our country naked. Period.
Report to administrator
+2 #4 Omuzira Ente 2019-04-18 22:23
Regimes have untouchables and Hon Kuteesa is one of such leaders in President Museveni's government.

Few people know that Uganda Air and Water Transport belongs to one family whose son is also the owner of Government Oil reserves in JINJA .

Such leaders are only answerable to the country after a regime change. Are you annoyed with these people , just cool down it may not be today or tomorrow but the day is definitely coming.

Fortunately for angry Ugandans and Unfortunately for the sons and daughters of these leaders is that there is no hope for smooth transfer of power that would keep their loot..

It very clear that they may never leave to enjoy the loot of their parents, Whoever is near Presidents office should always carry the Bible as the answers of what will befell you is written in black and white, In Kenya the powerful Biwot who hired a plan from US to take President's Moi's walk stick to China is now sleeping with poverty fighting to retain his only remaining building
Report to administrator
0 #5 Odongkara 2019-04-19 14:30
These two accused persons should take a lesson from the former Peruvian president and also blow off their heads.

We are tired of these thieving people in our society. I'd Amin is being demonized for the murder of unknown number of Ugandans during his 8 years rule. But who now have murdered more Ugandans than Amin?

The 33 years of Museveni's rule has dispatched 229,482 mothers during child birth, unknown numbers of UPDF soldiers in Kisangani, North Uganda, South Sudan, Somalia and State murders.

The number of Ugandans who have been murdered through corruption and other means far exceeds the number tagged on Amin and we're still counting.
Report to administrator
0 #6 WADADA roger 2019-04-19 20:39
Dont worry, this Kutesa guy is untouchable, he is one of the super ministers
Report to administrator
0 #7 Joe B 2019-04-20 21:22
Let us blame Rwanda, it will solve all our ills, I can hear some voices saying!
Report to administrator

Comments are now closed for this entry