Even before settling an outstanding mega debt worth Shs265m, the Uganda Women Parliamentary Association (UWOPA) is reported to be eyeing another gamble.
This News site has it on proper grounds that UWOPA is indebted to a group of former staff whom it’s executive knifed even when their contracts were still running.
The executive at the time was headed by gorgeous Betty Amongi Akena, now minister for gender, labour and social development.
The Amongi executive allegedly decided to terminate the contracts of the former staffs and ended up being fined by Court when the victims sued. The court award was over Shs260m which up to date, Inspectors say isn’t yet paid.
We are told the speaker Anita Among has intervened in this and wants UWOPA to make good of the debts.
However, Inspectors suggested that even before this dust settles, the new executive led by dark-skinned Sarah Opendi allegedly wants to venture into another similar risky business.
“They want to fire the staff even as their contracts are still running. There’s a state of uncertainty among the staff as Opendi seems to be determined to swing her axe” an inspector said.
Indeed, our Inspectors landed on the contracts for the embattled staff. It shows that most of them signed contracts running for three years while others signed for five years. They all signed in 2020 and majority of them end in 2024/26. The names of the staff under panic are already with us and their salaries.
All these according to contracts before us are still enjoying their salaries up to 2023 and beyond.
We’re informed that the new executive is allegedly bitter that these men and women are enjoying fat salaries yet they aren’t having much responsibilities like MPs. The staff however, claim that even as UWOPA accuses them of eating well, they are the ones who hunt for this money by penning proposals to donors, a job MPs themselves cannot do on their own as they are busy handling national and personal issues.
The alleged move to knife the staff is reported to even have sharply divided UWOPA executive with those against warning Opendi of nasty consequences if they implement the move.
Those said to be against include Linda Auma (publicity secretary), Acan Judith (rep. Northern) and Namukuta Brenda treasurer.
Opendi’s gang reportedly include Brenda Nabukenya (vice chairperson), Namugga Gareth (rep. central), Agnes Kirabo (undecided), Catherine Ndamira (rep. Western), Laura Kanushu (rep. PWD) and Margaret Rwabushaija (workers rep) formerly of Unatu.
“These staff can’t take all that money. Why? Do they even know how it hurts to be an MP? We are suffering with heavy loans, and here are people eating free money? No, no, these exhorbitant salaries can’t be accepted. They should quit and we bring in people who will take modest salaries” an inspector quoted MPs as ranting.
We are told UWOPA accounts were frozen by former staff who were fired under similar circumstances. The Opendi executive we are told has been frequenting speaker Anita’s office seeking her intervention to have the accounts reopened but the woman from Bukedea has allegedly counseled that UWOPA first pays the victims since they won the case.
Meanwhile, as UWOPA swims into these muddy waters, male MPs led by NRM caucus publicity secretary Brandon Kintu have laid a serious ambush against them by forming a parallel association baptized as Uganda Men Parliamentary Association (UMEPA). According to letters we chanced on, Brandon has even already alerted the clerk to parliament Adolf Mwesige asking for recommendation letter as they move to register the association. Inspectors warned that if Opendi and her group don’t study the issue more closely, it’s bound to force many female MPs join their male counterparts.
“After all, men are lively and lovely. They will welcome many female MPs as you know!” Says an inspector.
Watch this space!