Masaka's Acting Mayor Boycotts End of Year Party over Meat

720 Views Masaka, Uganda
A click of councilors from Masaka Municipality yesterday boycotted their end of year party over a disagreement on the sharing of meat. Ten councilors, led by the acting Mayor of Masaka Kasibante Kibabirire, were angry that they were denied money to buy meat for patients in Masaka Hospital. It is an annual custom for the Municipal Council to give money to the councilors to buy meat to share with the sick over the Christmas and New Year's festivities. Kibabirire explains that this year the Town Clerk of Masaka, Nick Begyira, refused to release the money fro the meat. Kasibante says he and the other councilors could not, with a clear conscience, attend the party at Hotel Brovad in Masaka town when there were people suffering in their midst. Emmanuel Gakyaalo, the assistant Town Clerk in charge of Nyendo Ssenyange Division, says money was released for the meat. He claims the click of councilors misappropriated the money and was demanding extra cash. According to Gakyaalo, the acting Mayor made a requisition of 900,000 shillings for the meat, but didn't buy a single kilogram of it. He says all requisition vouchers are available for scrutiny and no more money will be disbursed until accountability for the funds released is presented. The end of year party that was intended to be a joyous occasion was marred by insults and accusations, particularly aimed at the dissenting councilors. Joseph Mukwaya, the Masaka Chief Administrative Officer, has an ominous warning for the councilors. He says the are not indispensable and if they don't reform they may not be re-elected in 2011. //Cue in: iMind you, 2011 #i Cue out: i# coming in 2011.i// Speaking on behalf of the Municipal Council, Justine Tusiime the female councilor for Nyendo Ssenyange, distanced her colleagues from the actions of the acting Mayor and his group. She read the names of the councilors who attended the party and declared those absent and declared those absent rebel councilors.