Friday January 31 2014

MPs question Ethiopian over ‘juicy’ UNRA job

Mr Ayalew- Kabede Belew, who was thrown out of

Mr Ayalew- Kabede Belew, who was thrown out of Parliament yesterday. PHOTO BY GEOFFREY SSERUYANGE 

By Yasiin Mugerwa

Parliament.

An Ethiopian who was ‘irregularly’ given a job at Uganda National Roads Authority reportedly with the help of the World Bank was yesterday kicked out of Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee and branded a “stranger”.
Mr Ayalew-Kabede Belew, the acting head of procurement directorate, was not allowed to say anything after members, led by Mr Odonga Otto (Aruu) and Mr Yona Musinguzi (Ntungamo), called him a “stranger” claiming he was allegedly recruited through a “backdoor” process.

Mr Belew only submitted letters to prove that his contract was renewed by the Attorney General, Mr Peter Nyombi last week.

Information before PAC shows that Mr Belew was initially hired on November 24, 2010 as a consultant to help UNRA build capacity to handle procurement deals.
“This matter is close to our hearts because the mother of all corruption is hatched in procurement deals,” PAC chairperson Kassiano Wadri said.
The lawmakers questioned the lack of transparency in the recruitment process although UNRA boss Ssebbugga Kimeze insisted that it was the body that requested the World Bank to help them recruit an international consultant to build capacity in the procurement department, now a directorate.

This newspaper understands that on December 9, last year, Mr Kimeze wrote to Mr Nyombi requesting for extension of Mr Belew’s contract.
UNRA stated that the consultant satisfactorily performed his contract.
But in the same letter, UNRA stated that the consultant is still building capacity to handle the increasing workload.

The request was rejected on the grounds that within the three years of his initial contract, the consultant should have built capacity.
Bufumbira East MP Eddie Kwizera said after the receipt of the UNRA appeal for a reversal, Mr Nyombi granted the one-year extension, adding that his contract should not be extended again.

Mr Otto said Mr Kabede earns $19,000 (more than Shs47million) per month yet his job was not advertised.
But UNRA officials told the committee that Mr Belew’s job was advertised on World Bank website.

ymugerwa@ug.nationmedia.com

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