Museveni Orders Investigation into Legality of UK Sanctions Against Ugandan Officials

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President Museveni Yoweri Kaguta has asked Attorney General Kiryowa Kiwanuka to clarify the legality of the United Kingdom’s sanctions on Ugandan officials.

The president made the directive in a letter addressed to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Jeje Odongo, dated May 2, 2024, calling the issue an internal matter for the country.

“The High Commissioner told me that they intended to sanction the Hons. Kitutu and Nandutu for their roles in the “mabaati” issue. I would like, by the copy of this letter, to ask the Attorney General about the legality of this action since this is a purely internal matter for Uganda,” the letter read in part.

The President noted that the issue (theft of iron sheets) was discovered by Ugandan agencies and that Ugandan courts are still handling the matter.

“The alleged theft was discovered by our agencies, and the Ugandan courts are handling the case. The accused are not yet convicted. How do other countries come into the matter? Attorney General, advise,” the President wrote.

Museveni also directed the Inspectorate of Government and the Ministry of Ethics and Integrity to look into Speaker of Parliament Anita Annet Among’s wealth in the UK after revealing in the letter that he was briefed by the UK government before the sanctions.

“Meanwhile, by the copies of this letter, I request the Inspector General of Government (IGG) and Minister of Integrity to inform me if the Rt. Hon. Anita Among declared in her forms of the Leadership Code her owning of a house or houses in the UK,” the President said.

President Museveni’s call to probe comes at a time when the UK and United Arab Emirates (UAE), governments imposed sanctions on Speaker Among and two former ministers, Mary Goretti Kitutu and Agnes Nandutu.

The sanctions consist of travel bans and asset freezes in the UK, alleging corruption-related issues.

President Museveni expressed surprise at the sanctions and emphasized the presumption of innocence until proven guilty for the individuals involved.

The Ugandan government aims to engage with the UK authorities to understand the rationale behind the sanctions and the actions taken by the British government.

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