What you need to know:
- The arrests came after the student reportedly visited the office for several days but was allegedly turned away by the officials on all occasions.
Police in Jinja City Thursday arrested five staff from the area National Identification and Registration Authority (NIRA) office for allegedly soliciting a Shs20,000 bribe from a student seeking a birth certificate.
The arrest comes after the student reportedly visited the office for several days but was allegedly turned away by the officials on all occasions.
Several complaints were also registered at the Jinja City Internal Security Office and that of the Resident City Commissioner (RCC) against NIRA officials allegedly soliciting bribes from unsuspecting applicants seeking birth certificates and National Identity cards.
The suspects, who are currently being detained at Jinja Central Police Station awaiting their arraignment in court, are from the IT department, registry, an office attendant and two interns.
Their arrest was, however, made successful with the help of a female student (informant) who has requested anonymity for fear of reprisals.
The Jinja RCC, Mr Kyeyune Ssenyonjo, said when the girl came to his office, she was facilitated with a marked Shs20,000 that would later pin the suspects upon receipt.
“It is interesting that when the girl went back and offered the money, the officer received it and was captured since we had planted detectives on the ground," he said.
"We have arrested the heads of department for promoting bribes in public office that is meant to offer free services,” Mr Ssenyonjo said.
He added: "These (officials) will serve as an example to public servants, especially in health centres and hospitals which many people are complaining about."
Ms Rose Nalwayo, one of the applicants who had come for her child's birth certificate, said she was allegedly tossed by the officials for three days.
Ms Prosy Kyosiima, a resident of Bugembe in Jinja City, said she had come for her child's birth certificate that is needed at school, but she has allegedly not been given any attention apart from being told to wait outside until they call her.
When contacted for a comment, the NIRA Public Relation Officer Mr Gilbert Kadiro, said he had not received any information about the arrest of NIRA officers in Jinja.
“I don’t have any information on that and I need to first verify whether they are NIRA staff because they may be people hanging around impersonating our staff yet they are not. I am yet to get official information regarding that, ” said Mr Kadiro.