Buhweju district boss locks town council offices over staff absenteeism

Nyakashaka Town Council offices after they were locked by the district chairperson on Monday. PHOTO | ZADOCK AMANYISA

The Buhweju District Chairperson, Mr Deguretius Atuhaire, on Monday locked offices of Nyakashaka Town Council located in Buhweju West Constituency accusing the staff of absenteeism.

Mr Atuhaire said he had been receiving complaints from residents accusing town council officials of keeping the offices closed when they need services.

“I have been getting complaints from the members of the public that whenever they go to get services, they find the offices closed and there is no one to attend to them. So, I made an impromptu visit to the office at around 11:30am and found it closed. I bought a padlock and added it on theirs,” Mr Atuhaire said.

“It has become a habit for public servants to be absent on duty. How does someone who needs services come to the office and doesn’t even find an office attendant? My action intends to fix this issue there and then. We should not have this happen again in Buhweju District where I am a political head,” he added.

He summoned the town council staff to report to the district and give an account of what happened and why their office remained closed up to almost mid-day.

A town council staff member who preferred anonymity told this reporter that they were doing exactly what the chairperson and other officials in the district have been doing. She added that they (staff) were also suffering challenges like poor roads and weather.

“But the district Chairperson stays in another district (Bushenyi). By the time he came to our office, he was also coming from Bushenyi and someone who needed his services at 9-10am did not get them. We could also be in the same bracket but he is victimizing us because he is bigger than us,” a staffer said.

When reached out by this reporter for a comment over the phone on Tuesday morning, the Nyakashaka town clerk, Mr Lawrence Kamukama said he was not in position to give a comment. He instead asked to get back after a meeting he was engaged in.

The Buhweju Resident District Commissioner, Mr Nicolas Nuwagira said that public officials in the district suffer a challenge of accommodation, the reason some don’t reach their duty stations in time.

“Being a Monday, most of these guys have gone for the weekend and have probably not returned by the time one needs them. That challenge should also be looked into before we judge them,” said he noted.


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