Gov’t tasked to clarify assistant RDC appointment criteria

Ssenyonyi wondered what roles the new team will do that isn’t being done by the RDCs and Deputy RDCs.

Speaker Anita Among has asked the Minister of Presidency Milly Babalanda to explain the criteria used in the selection and appointment of the recent Assistant RDCs, after the Opposition raised concern on the questionable character of some of the people that have been appointed to these positions.

“Let us get the report and if it is true the money was approved, then how much was it? It still brings you to the calibre of people that the Leader of Opposition is talking about. Do you just bring in people who just go on rampage, like the one, I don’t want to mention the name,” said Among.

This followed a concern raised by Joel Ssenyonyi the LOP who wondered why government that has been spearheading the abolishing and merger of some agencies back to Ministries, would be the same regime to appoint over 300 assistant RDCs.

Ssenyonyi wondered what roles the new team will do that isn’t being done by the RDCs and Deputy RDCs.

“Government has been pushing us on rationalization saying we need to rationalize entities and send them back to the Ministries so that we can save taxpayers’ money and cut down on Government expenditure, and that is a compelling argument. But while we are rationalizing, here then comes another huge Government expenditure because you can’t preach water and then drink wine. What role are Assistant RDCs going to play that RDCs and Deputy RDCs aren’t playing? We need to have a good understanding of that,” he said.

In her communication, Minister Babalanda said that the Assistant RDCs are going to promote patriotism, carry out mobilization and fight corruption.

However, ssenyonyi disagreed saying that, “We need to be helped to understand whether now the Assistant RDCs are now taking over the work of the Inspectorate of Government because there seems to be a lot of duplication. Also, if you are saying they are meant to carry out mobilization, for what exactly? Is it mobilization for the NRM, Parliament, for what exactly?”

David Bahati, Minister of State for Industry called out Ssenyonyi for feigning ignorance about the appointment of Assistant RDCs, yet he was part of the team at Parliament that approved funds for the appointment of Assistant RDCs in the current 2023/24 budget, and the Minister of Presidency was merely taking action.

“I remember in this budget, we approved money for Assistant RDCs and the Minister has taken action, and then you come back as if you weren’t involved, you were involved in approving,” said Bahati.

Meanwhile the government Chief Whip, Hamson Obua asked the Speaker to give government more time to bring a statement to Parliament, in order to explain the matter.

“I wish to request to give time to the Minister of Presidency to come and provide clarification on the appointment of the Assistant Resident District Commissioners and Assistant Resident City Commissioners, their roles and responsibilities and why the NRM thought it wise that we need to empower more those offices that do exist in our districts,” he said.

On Monday, April 23,2024 Babalanda provided clarity on the recent appointments in the Office of RDCs confirming that only two staff members have been recruited to support office activities.

She noted that once the necessary public service procedures are completed, a comprehensive list of successful candidates will be published for public awareness and support.

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