MPs hand Dr Diana Atwine to CID over Shs6bn fraud

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Ms. Diana Atwiine

The Office of the Permanent Secretary Ministry of Health on Wednesday appeared before the Committee on Public Accountability [PAC] to submit responses to the Auditor General’s report for the Financial Year 2017/18.

PAC is probing into the construction of 27-bed maternity wards at the inflated cost of Shs1.4bn each by the Ministry of Health yet the same Ministry constructed 214-bed maternity wards at Shs500m each.

The Public Accountability Committee on Thursday recommended handing over of the Accounting Officer, Ministry of Health Ms. Diana Atwiine and the Under Secretary Mr. Ronald Ssegawa to the CID Directorate of Parliament to write a statement on the unlawful expenditure of over Shs6bn.

The acting chairperson of PAC Hon. Philip Polly Okin Ojara first adjourned the Committee meeting for 20 minutes for the Atwiine and Ssegawa to write a statement at the CID Directorate of Parliament.

According to Ojara, although Parliament allocates funds according to work plans presented by the respective ministries detailing how it would be spent, the two diverted the money without following proper channels.

MPs are investigating whether the money was purposely stolen instead of funding the projects (rehabilitation and expansion of Kayunga Hospital that was supposed to get a paediatric surgery unit at Shs2.2bn) it was intended for.

The pair also spent Shs416m on unsupported payables, Sh172m irregularly transferred to an Italian non-governmental organisation and the payment of Shs800m for unexecuted works.

The committee also queried an unspent Shs3.6bn in the last two financial years.

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