Three people have been arrested for allegedly forging diplomatic notes for US visas.
According to police spokesperson, Fred Enanga, the Directorate of Criminal Investigations while working in close coordination with the US Embassy in Kampala, are actively investigating the circumstances under which 11 visa applicants, allegedly submitted fraudulent documents for US Visas to the Embassy.
Enanga explains that the facts they have so far gathered indicate that two Diplomatic Notes dated 21.06.2022 and 4.07.2022, were issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, using fraudulent or falsified police certificates.
“The attached police certificates that are alleged to have been signed by an unknown person on behalf of the Director for Interpol and International Relations, were established to be a forgery.
It is further established that the Diplomatic Note issued on 21.06.2022, was signed by a one Opio Innocent, a 1st Secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He, however, did not give clear reasons for issuing the Diplomatic Note,” says Enanga.
He further reveals that the second Diplomatic Note dated 4.07.2022 was signed by a one Wandera Emmanuel a Foreign Service Officer, at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
“He (Wandera) claimed that we had signed the document after correcting an error on the original document, allegedly signed by his superior. He, however, did not notify him of the changes,” he says.
Enanga says that all the 11 applicants were fronted as police officers going for a training course in Washington D.C in the US.
“Out of the 11 applicants, 10 were established to be civilians, while one police officer, used false information, claiming he was a detective attached to CID Headquarters, yet he was a police driver,” says Enanga.
He adds, “It is also surprising that the Diplomatic Notes were delivered to the US Embassy, by a one Kiwanuka Louise Mary, a courier at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, after informally receiving them from an intermediary, known as Odong John Baptist, who was not an employee at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.”
Out of the 11 applicants, three travelled to the US and are wanted, two were arrested, three have their passports pending at the US Embassy and three had not submitted their documents, according to Enanga.
Enanga states that they are investigating the entire racket for issuing Diplomatic Notes, in total disregard to the guidelines issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
“The investigations do show that a number of travel agents, intermediaries in conspiracy with rogue officials, were submitting fraudulent applications for US visas at a cost.
They compile profiles with forged work experience, bank documents, birth certificates, police certificates, marriage certificates among others, to help applicants acquire student visas, study visas, and resident visas among others,” he reveals.