The Inspector General of Government (IGG) has kicked off an investigation into alleged corruption and maladministration against the board of governors and former management of Old Kampala Secondary School.
In a letter seen by The UGNEWS24, the IGG will also investigate poor management of the school, bad working relationships between management, teachers, and students, and poor performance which have since frustrated the growth of the school.
Some members of the board of governors and those of staff are being accused of undermining the office of the headteacher and have used their influence to conduct heinous activities which have since crippled the development of the institution.
A source who is familiar with the matter told the UGNEWS24 that the board is composed of three powerful stakeholders including the representatives of the teachers, Old Boys and parents.
The activities of this group, according to the source have greatly affected the progress of the institution.
“The whole administration has been messed up by these cliques of people and they are inciting some staff members to defy the guidance of the headteacher and other school organs. They control all the finances and it is not easy for anyone to stand in their way,” the source told the UGNEWS24.
These cliques, the source claimed went to an extent of wanting to oust the headteacher through a board of governors’ emergency meeting which was held on November 10 2022. This is the same group that incited violence at Old Kampala SS in 2017.
Stephen Wandera, an OB of the school said the group is headed by one Ronald Leonard Egesa who was the former Old Kampala Students Association( OKOSA) chairman and Patrick Musinguzi.
This is the very group that insisted on the transfer of Aziida Nsubuga the then headteacher of Old Kampala SS in 2017, after she had asked them for accountability of the money collected from students and questioned how this money benefited the school in development.
Currently, Egesa reportedly fled to Dubai trying to seek asylum because the government is also hunting for him on the allegation of committing different crimes in the country.
The chairperson of OKOSA, Joseph Liminya said that in April 2021 Egesa group was completely voted out to change the image of old students of Old Kampala. But they had infiltrated the board.
“Currently they are using the school board of governors we found in place to grow their private companies using school funds and resources, sufficient evidence will be out after the audit. Such unlawful acts have greatly affected Old Kampala SS,” he said in his letter addressed to the First Lady who also doubles as Minister of Education, Janet Kataaha Museveni.
“We suspect the new headteacher is subjected to mistreatment because he expressed his determination to handle the issues which continue to plunge the school into further crisis for-example lack of serious teaching which has led to very poor performance,”
For example, out of 265 candidates of 2021 UCE candidates, Liminya said 125 and 105 got F9 in chemistry and physics respectively.
In areas of procurement, he called for urgent intervention before the situation goes out of hand.
For instance, he said procurement for the construction of the perimeter wall fence was not clear and the cost was raised from Shs 145 million for just 100 metres to Shs 160 million without going back to the contracts committee; the second phase of more 100 metres also cost Shs 145 million.
“So far Shs.285 million has been spent on just the 200 metres constructed so far on an even surface where no grading/stone breaking is needed, dry land which is not wetland where reinforcement is needed. It is suspected that some stakeholders did not take the headteachers option for a cheaper alternative in good faith.”
Another source told the UGNEWS24 that it was surprising how this amount of money could be paid to the contractor even before submitting the bid security and following other procurement procedures.
“The procurement process as found in place by the new headteacher is not clear. Any attempts by the headteacher to streamline the process attracts threats by stakeholders and staff members who seem to be well connected to some powerful members of the board of governors.”
Wandera said that the process of collecting fees (50,000) for construction of the perimeter wall started sometime back, but at the handover which took place on June 1 2022, the school had balances of shs.5 million on the four school accounts.
“The headteacher advised the staff, especially the bursar’s office, against receiving cash from students which he physically took for banking, and then issued receipts and clearance cards by the same office. This proposal seems to be one of the causes for the abrupt attempted “impeachment” of the headteacher without regard to procedures,”.
However, there were some resolutions that were made in a meeting that was held with the Ministry of Education and Sports on January 11 2023 at Embassy House.
Some of the resolutions included auditing to be carried out concerning the school finances and procurement process, investigations about the process of contract award, costing and construction of the perimeter wall be done and the school debt burden of over shs.280 million to be investigated.
In the OKOSA executive committee meeting that took place February 7 2023 at Old Kampala SS, Liminya said it was resolved that they can no longer trust the operations of the board of governors.
“We withdrew OKOSA representation from this board until the resolutions made at the ministry are all affected,” he said, citing one of the resolutions.
In a letter dated March 14 2023, IGG Beti Olive Kamya has since suspended the transfer of the head teacher, saying he will be very helpful in their ongoing investigation into these issues.