Kazinda convicted of abuse of office, embezzlement 

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A prison warder escorts Geoffrey Kazinda

Geoffrey Kazinda has been convicted of abuse of office, embezzlement and causing financial loss of more than Shs316m to government of Uganda.

Kazinda, a former principal accountant in the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM), was found guilty of syndicate corruption on Wednesday by Anti-Corruption Court in its final judgment.

This judgment is expected to be delivered by the trial judge Lawrence Gidudu who has heard the case for the past three years.

The court assessor, Ferrer Okech, has earlier asked court to acquit Kazinda of charges of abuse of office, embezzlement, causing financial loss of more than Shs316 million to government and diversion of public resources.

Kazinda is co-accused with Ms Beatrice Kezabu (assistant resettlement officer), who is also separately charged with false accounting; Ms Shamim Masembe, the proprietor of TOTAL fuel station in Ntinda, and businessman Hussein Katumwa, the station manager.

They are accused of submitting wrong accountabilities for fuel drawn from Caltex Ntinda Service Station now called TOTAL yet no fuel was consumed.

Kazinda and a clerk in the OPM Beatrice Keezabu were also convicted of embezzlement for using their positions to process its payment.

Masembe and Katumwa were found guilty of aiding the two government officials to steal public funds.

The trial judge Lawrence Gidudu cited satisfactory evidence against the accused convicting them on all the counts including Conspiracy to defraud, Embezzlement, fraudulent accounting, forgery and uttering false documents.

Kazinda was first convicted in June 2013 of forging the then OPM Permanent Secretary Pius Bigirimana’s signature and sentenced to five years which he has since completed.

He still has another case where he is charged with officials of the Finance Ministry for allegedly misappropriating Shs21billion of PRDP funds meant to rehabilitate the war torn Northern Uganda.

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