By PATRICK JARAMOGI
KAMPALA, SHIFTMEDIA- The Managing Director of Uganda Coffee Development Authority (UCDA)’s woes are far from over.
Last week we unearthed in this investigative website how Dr. Emmanuel Iyamulemye Niyibigira had withdrawn Uganda’s membership from the International Coffee Organisation(ICO), something that experts said was disastrous.
Now we can reveal that after his contract expired and frantic efforts to have his contract renewed hit a snag, Dr. Emmanuel Iyamulemye did the unthinkable, when he traveled to Dubai to attend the Dubai EXPO despited being warned against traveling by the Minister for Agriculture, Animal Industry, and Fisheries.
According to the Itinerary, Emmanuel Iyamulemye Niyibigirahe is due to fly back to Uganda this Friday.
The Dubai Expo 2020 is a World Expo currently hosted by Dubai in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) from 1 October 2021 to March 2021 (182 days). President Museveni is in attendance, but that is not the focus of our story today.
What we are focusing on is why a Civil Servant who knows their term has expired, would even go an extra mile to defy the minister under his docket and travel on taxpayers’ money to Dubai?
As we calculate how much taxpayers’ money was put to waste (Remember Uganda is already out of ICO, so our representation or call the UCDA representation in international matters ceased to matter).
Attorney General rejects contract extension
On September 24, 2021, the Minister for Agriculture, Animal Industry, and Fisheries Hon. Frank Tumwebaze wrote a letter (ADM7/166/01) addressed to the Attorney General Kiryowa Kiwanuka seeking legal interpretation regarding whether it was fine for him to re-appoint Iyamulemye as Managing Director.
In his letter to the AG, Tumwebaze noted that following the enactment of the National Coffee Act 2021, Cabinet was yet to sit to appoint a Board of Directors for Uganda Coffee Development Authority (UCDA).
Apparently, the minister was informing the AG that the UCDA Managing Director’s contract was expiring on September 30, 2021, and was seeking legal interpretation if he was right to renew the MDs contract.
In his response, quoting Section 22(1) of the National Coffee Act No. 17 of 2021, the Attorney General said:
“There shall be a Managing Director who shall be appointed by the Board on such terms and conditions as the Board may determine.”
The New Coffee Act Section 14 (4) notes that the members of the board shall be appointed by the Minister, except the Managing Director, so in short Hon. Frank Tumwebaze was out of order here as per the letter from the Kiwanuka Kiryowa.
“In view of the above provisions of the law, the appointing authority of the Managing Director is the board and not the minister,” wrote the Attorney General.
THE AG said it would be ultravires for the minister to exercise the function of the board.
“Accordingly, I advise that a board be appointed to enable it to appoint a Managing Director of Uganda Coffee Development Authority,” advised Kiwanuka Kiryowa.