Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Wikileaks: ACCU Director's life threatened for revealing corrupt official, i.e. Mbabazi, Mu7




Subject: Wikileaks: ACCU Director's life threatened for revealing corrupt

official, i.e. Mbabazi, Mu7


Reference ID





10KAMPALA13 2010-01-07 11:36 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Kampala





E.O. 12958: DECL: 2020/01/07




CLASSIFIED BY: Aaron Sampson, Pol/Econ Chief, State, Pol/Econ;

REASON: 1.4(B), (D) ¶1. (C) Summary: The Director of the Anti-Corruption


Uganda (ACCU), Jasper Tumuhimbise, went into hiding in late

December after publishing a "Fame and Shame" booklet on government

corruption. Funded by the Millennium Challenge Corporation's (MCC)

anti-corruption threshold program, ACCU's booklet is a public

perception survey in which Security Minister and National

Resistance Movement (NRM) Secretary General Amama Mbabazi was perceived as

Uganda's most corrupt public official. Tumuhimbise

went into hiding after he and ACCU staff received threatening


telephone calls and a visit from security personnel seeking

information on the ACCU's international donors. On December 24,

Tumuhimbise told PolOff that security forces followed him from the

eastern town of Soroti to Kampala. He blames Mbabazi for the

intimidation of ACCU staff. End Summary.






ACCU's Book of Fame and Shame ----------------------------------------- ¶2. (U)

The ACCU is a coalition of approximately 60 local

anti-corruption organizations. In 2009, the ACCU received

approximately $25,000 in MCC funds to survey local perceptions of

government corruption, publish an annual book of "Fame and Shame",

and initiate an anti-corruption activist of the year award. The

ACCU says the booklet is intended to praise anti-corruption

"heroes" and force "the shamed persons to reflect on themselves;

the institutions they serve; their country and their level of

patriotism." Of the 1,772 survey

respondents, 30% identified

Security Minister Mbabazi as Uganda's most corrupt public official

due to his role in the 2008 Temangalo land scandal that cost the National

Social Security Fund approximately $6 million (ref. A). President Museveni

placed second on the list of shame, with 21% the vote, for failing to hold

Mbabazi, Foreign Minister Sam Kutesa, and senior National Resistance Movement

(NRM) leaders accountable for corruption. Other "shamed" NRM officials include

Trade Minister Kahinda Otafiire, Public Works Minister John Nasasira, and

former Health Ministers Mike Mukula and Jim Muhwezi. ¶3. (U) Museveni also made

the ACCU's list of fame "as an unwavering

freedom fighter and anti-corruption activist." Disgraced

ex-Inspector General of Government Faith Mwondha, opposition figure

Norbert Mao, and First Lady Janet Museveni topped the fame list.

Survey respondents also positively perceived Ethics and Integrity

Minister Nsaba Buturo, who is

one of the most vocal proponents of

Uganda's draft anti-homosexuality legislation, for "his

outspokenness against corruption." Minister Buturo presided over

the booklet's launching ceremony. The ACCU selected James Ogoola,

Principal Judge of the High Court of Uganda, as the Anti-Corruption

Activist of the Year for 2009.




--------------------------------------------- -------------------


The "Shamed" Self-Incriminate Themselves Further


--------------------------------------------- ------------------- ¶4. (C) On

December 19, Mbabazi criticized the ACCU's booklet and

called Tumuhimbise an "idiot" on a local radio program. On December

21, Mbabazi's niece, Susan Katono, emailed a document criticizing

the ACCU's motives, methodology and findings to EconOff. Katono

compiled the document from comments sent to her by senior

government officials with the understanding that she would forward

the information to the U.S. Mission. Katono

indicated that Minister

Mbabazi and other NRM leaders were unhappy with the booklet. ¶5. (C) On

December 23, local media reported that Tumuhimbise was in

hiding, that ACCU staff were receiving threatening phone calls, and

that security officials questioned ACCU employees on the

organization's sources of funding. Tumuhimbise confirmed this


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information to PolOff on December 24, adding that he left Kampala

on the advice of friends only to return after discovering that

security services were shadowing him upcountry as well. Tumuhimbise

said a security vehicle tailed him from the eastern town of Soroti

back to Kampala. Having spearheaded the ACCU's lawsuit against the

NSSF over Mbabazi's Temangalo land scandal in 2008, Tumuhimbise

said he is accustomed to menacing phone calls, but that being

followed by a security services vehicle is new. Tumuhimbise added

that he is using a different telephone out of fear

that Ugandan

security is tracking his regular cell phone.




--------------------------------------------- ------


Comment: Treating Critics Like Criminals


--------------------------------------------- ------ ¶6. (C) Under Mbabazi's

leadership, it appears Ugandan security

services spend the majority their time tracking opposition leaders

and critics of the NRM. While the ACCU's analytical methodology was

not the most advanced, its list of shame accurately captured public

perceptions of Uganda's most corrupt government officials.

Mbabazi's apparent response - tasking security services to hound

ACCU employees - interferes with a USG funded organization's

attempt to improve government transparency and reduce public sector

corruption. As the ACCU's most shamed public figure, Mbabazi is

living up to expectations.






Uganda: Fame And Shame Book a Good Start

9 December 2009




Over the years, a lot of resources have been dedicated to the fight against

corruption in Uganda. The number of anti-corruption institutions have also

multiplied but the vice has instead been galloping far ahead of these efforts.

It is possible that Ugandans have either accepted corruption as a way of life

or feel too powerless without unmasking the veil of corruption in putting faces

and real people to the unavailable public services or shoddy delivery where an

attempt has been made.


Like the media, anti-corruption agencies are running out of means on how to

package the corruption message that will project it in the clearest manner as

the most abhorable and shameful practice that it is.


As part of efforts to mark the world Anti-Corruption Day yesterday, the

Anti-Corruption Coalition of Uganda (ACCU) published - for the first time in

the history of Uganda and in its fight against corruption - a book aptly titled

the Book of Fame and Shame. The book captures public perceptions on the persons

Ugandans think are the most corrupt and those they think to be champions of the

fight against corruption.


It is interesting to note that some names appear on both lists as persons

Ugandans believe not to have done enough to fight corruption while at the same

time, others consider the same individuals as champions of the corruption fight.

Such a finding is critical. Until Ugandans begin feeling the embarrassment of

their actions, redemption will be difficult. Years of turmoil that brought

death and blood to young innocent eyes for long, general neglect and its

associated impact on service delivery, a high or low moral standing typical of

African traditional cultural values, have been compromised.


Hopefully, the efforts of ACCU, with support from other anti-corruption

institution, will bring Ugandans back on track. If leaders are concerned about

their moral values as public figures, and the general population moves to shun

the corrupt, then rays of hope will emerge.





Uganda: Fame, Shame And Naming Museveni

14 December 2009




Nairobi — The vanguard of the war on corruption last week took an audaciously

bold step by naming Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni as protecting corrupt

public officials in the country's first ever public perception survey on



The haemorrhaging of taxpayers' funds through corruption is well documented.

At least $600 million -- half the budget of the Works Ministry, which is in

charge of the roads sector -- is lost annually in fraudulent tenders alone.


A lot more is bled away in direct bribes and kickbacks.


That is alarming, but not surprising, as many Ugandans know that these deals

are sanctioned from above.

Of course, the president's name has always been bandied about but only in

whispers; no publication has dared to name and shame the country's Fountain of



But according to the 'Book of Fame and Shame' released by the Anti Corruption

Coalition of Uganda, the president is perceived to protect officials who are

persistently disgraced in graft scandals.


The line-up of the corrupt in the survey, conducted between January and

November 2008, reads like a who's who of the ruling party -- from its officials

to Cabinet ministers, Members of Parliament, resident district commissioners

and heads of parastatals who are known supporters of Museveni's party -- a

serous indictment considering that the survey's respondents were drawn from

government institutions and the general public.


However, the Coalition's survey also names officials who are perceived to be


And bizarrely enough, Museveni's name makes this list as well.


The president's commitment is brought into question by the ongoing CHOGM probe,

in which the taxpayer bled over $200 million.




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