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Museveni vows to defend Dr Musenero 'until people go into hiding'

President Museveni with Musenero

President Yoweri Museveni has vowed to defend his embattled minister of Science, Technology, and Innovation, Dr Monica Musenero who is currently being investigated by parliament. The speaker of parliament Anita Annet Among earlier this year appointed a select committee to investigate allegations by the Ntungamo Municipality MP, Yona Musinguzi against the minister for alleged mismanagement of funds allocated to the Presidential Scientific Initiative on Epidemics (PRESIDE) for Covid-19 vaccine development. Musenero is accused of lying to the president that Uganda can develop a Covid-19 vaccine. Last week, the select committee led by Xavier Kyooma, the Ibanda North Constituency MP found that the process of developing a local vaccine was marred with irregularities. The committee discovered that over Shs 3.4 billion that was allocated to PRESIDE could not be accounted for. Despite this, Museveni says that he will defend the minister who is a decorated and a world-renowned scientist. Museveni told legislators and invited guests at the budget reading that he will defend the minister until everyone against her is forced to go into hiding. Museveni noted that the work scientists like Musenero are involved in, is supposed to lead to major breakthroughs in science and technology that will lead to big developments in the country. This is not the first time the president has warned people against attacking Musenero. In November last year, during the Science, Technology, and Innovation exhibition at Kololo, Museveni, who sounded furious, cautioned anyone behind the attacks on 'his decorated scientist.' In earlier interviews, Musenero maintained her innocence, claiming she is being witch-hunted for refusing to pay bribes in the vaccine treatment and development process. The doctor also insinuated that the country's work to start vaccine manufacturing has been frustrated by big pharmaceutical companies. "The truth will set me free. I have not stolen any government funds and my conscience is free. The president knows what work we are doing and has faith in it," Musenero said. According to Musenero, the three vaccine candidates are undergoing trials at the moment while one therapeutic treatment has already proven to be effective in treating Covid-19. {loadposition inarticle}

President Yoweri Museveni has vowed to defend his embattled minister of Science, Technology, and Innovation, Dr Monica Musenero who is currently being investigated by parliament.

The speaker of parliament Anita Annet Among earlier this year appointed a select committee to investigate allegations by the Ntungamo Municipality MP, Yona Musinguzi against the minister for alleged mismanagement of funds allocated to the Presidential Scientific Initiative on Epidemics (PRESIDE) for Covid-19 vaccine development.

Musenero is accused of lying to the president that Uganda can develop a Covid-19 vaccine. Last week, the select committee led by Xavier Kyooma, the Ibanda North Constituency MP found that the process of developing a local vaccine was marred with irregularities. The committee discovered that over Shs 3.4 billion that was allocated to PRESIDE could not be accounted for.

Despite this, Museveni says that he will defend the minister who is a decorated and a world-renowned scientist. Museveni told legislators and invited guests at the budget reading that he will defend the minister until everyone against her is forced to go into hiding.

Museveni noted that the work scientists like Musenero are involved in, is supposed to lead to major breakthroughs in science and technology that will lead to big developments in the country. This is not the first time the president has warned people against attacking Musenero. 

In November last year, during the Science, Technology, and Innovation exhibition at Kololo, Museveni, who sounded furious, cautioned anyone behind the attacks on 'his decorated scientist.' In earlier interviews, Musenero maintained her innocence, claiming she is being witch-hunted for refusing to pay bribes in the vaccine treatment and development process. The doctor also insinuated that the country's work to start vaccine manufacturing has been frustrated by big pharmaceutical companies.

"The truth will set me free. I have not stolen any government funds and my conscience is free. The president knows what work we are doing and has faith in it," Musenero said.

According to Musenero, the three vaccine candidates are undergoing trials at the moment while one therapeutic treatment has already proven to be effective in treating Covid-19.

© 2016 Observer Media Ltd