Uganda’s public prosecutor has announced that a minister will be charged with corruption for diverting metal roofing sheets intended to help people in the restive northeastern Karamoja region.
Ministers are rarely prosecuted for corruption in Uganda, where stealing and misusing public funds and materials is common.
In a remote region bordering Kenya and South Sudan, Karamoja region is home to pastoral nomads vulnerable to frequent droughts and deadly cattle raids.
Police arrested three close relatives of Karamoja Affairs minister Mary Goretti Kitutu in February for selling metal roofing sheets branded with “Office of the Prime Minister”, according to a report in the government-owned New Vision newspaper.
The Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP) said late on Wednesday it would charge Kitutu with corruption and conspiracy to commit a felony “for diverting iron sheets meant for the Karamoja Community Empowerment Programme”.
Kitutu, who will appear in court on Thursday, could not be reached for immediate comment as her phone was switched off.
Appearing before a parliamentary committee last month, she asked for forgiveness for the mismanagement of the distribution of metal roofing sheets.