By Ronald Kabuye
United Nations High Commission for Refugee UNHCR is at risky of loosing donor funding for the refugees if it fails to give an assurance to donors on alleged inflated numbers of refugees and the various controversies surrounding the refugee situation in the country.
While addressing a press conference today Tereza Ongara the regional spokesperson UNHCR said though business is still normal but they have already received indicators from donors that failure to ascertain the accurate number of refugees in the country and dealing with the current crisis that involves alleged human trafficking, corruption and fraudulent tendencies by both government and UNHCR officials then they risk loosing donor funding hence in the abide to ascertain the right number UNHCR, civil societies and government zeroed on carrying out a biometric verification exercise that is due to commence in March and end in September this year.
In the same way the UNHCR inspector general office is independently carrying out investigation on its staff following a report that the office received last year. however Tereeza declined to divulge into the spefics of the investigation and the people being investigated until they are fund culpable.
UNHCR committed to support the office of the Prime Minister investigation into the alledged involvement of government officials who alledged involved themselves in the fraud, corruption, sexual exploitation since such great harm refugees, erodes public confidence and donor trust in addition to causing a serious disservice to Uganda’s exemplary refugee policies.
It’s should be noted that four officials in charge of refugees from the office of Prime Minister were interdicted on the same allegations pending conclusion of investigation.
The affected include Mr. Apollo Kazungu(commissioner refugees), Mr. Walter Omondi (Refugees desk officer in Mbarara), Mr. John Baptist Ssentamu, formerly the camp commandant in mbarara who was later transferred to hoima and Mr Francis Nkwasibwe a registration officer/ assistant commandant in mbarara.
Apparently uganda is said to have a total 1,395,146 refugees and asylum seekers.
By Ronald Kabuye