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Did Ham Kiggundu Try to Run Away With Funds Donated for Covid Fight?

posted onJuly 5, 2021

Last Friday youthful city businessman Hamis Kiggundu popularly known as Ham donated Shs530 million to the Covid task force and the money was received by combative Prime Minister Robinah Nabbanja.

However, moments after the 'donation' was announced in the presence of cameras, people familiar with the dubious plan reveal that Ham's team had a bullion van waiting to whisk away the cash to 'keep it safely'.

But this was to hit a snag as the Prime Minister came from a meeting to find Mr Ham Kiggundu still at the office.

On asking why the businessman was still at the office about 4 hours after donating the cash, the Prime Minister was told that Mr Kiggundu wanted a receipt which Nabbanja asked her staff to work on.

As the bullion van was about to take off with the cash, Nabbanja insisted that the money must be deposited to the government account as advised by the President, something that Ham was uncomfortable with as he had his own plans. 

Apparently, the businessman claimed that the banks were closed, saying he would keep the funds until the banks are open to deposit the money in the account chosen by the controversial businessman.

"Which bank refuses to bank 530m?" Nabbanja wondered before calling a bank manager who organized for the money to be banked.

As such, Ham's plan to take away the cash that he had 'donated' was foiled by the no-nonsense Prime Minister recently appointed by the President for her resolve against any form of corruption.

Last year, Ham donated 100m but used a cheque, unlike this time when he came with bundles of cash. Courtesy photo

"If it was a trap that had been set up for me, I jumped it," Nabbanja said in an interview with NBS TV.

It is said that the businessman had wanted the publicity but intended to take away the cash in connivance with some people in the office of the prime minister after the departure of journalists.

Ham's suspicious explanation

The money, according to the businessman, was meant to facilitate the purchase of Covid vaccines for Ugandans.

The money was received by Prime Minister Nabbanja, who is the chairperson of the Covid-19 task force.

However, during the handover, Ham told the meeting that he had created an account to which the money should go as well as other contributions by the private sector.

“We have created an account with Stanbic bank where Dr. Musenero will be a signatory and a few other members that government might choose for this particular fund. Other private members may come and we support government. The money will go directly to this account to contribute towards the purchase of vaccines,” the city businessman said in front of cameras.

However, Nabbanja didn’t welcome the idea and insisted that the money can only go to an account earlier opened up by government as President Museveni had directed.

“In fact, ministers are not allowed to be signatory to those accounts,” the Prime Minister guided.

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