Ministry accountant arrested over Shs120m land fraud

BY JOSEPH KATO.

jkato@ug.nationmedia.com

Police have arrested the ministry of science, technology and innovation’s accountant over Shs120m land fraud.

Mr Geoffrey Auyit Odongu, was arrested yesterday by Lands Protection Unit (LPPU) based at Criminal Investigations Director (CID) headquarters in Kubuli following a case filed by Ms Robinnah Tushemerirwe.

In her statement, Ms Tushemerirwe said she bought land from Mr Odongu in March 2017 but he has since been tossing her up and down whenever she demands for the land title to aid the transfer process.

Tushemerirwe said she inspected the land in Kyanja and bought 21 decimals from him at Shs 120m. He promised to give her the land title in a few weeks so that she could transfer it into her name but he has since been playing hide and seek games.

Mr Odongu who was handcuffed at Kabalagala police station and later transferred to CID headquarters declined to speak to the media but opted for dialogue which collapsed since he did not have the land title with him. Ms Tushemerirwe insisted that the only dialogue she could listen to was being availed with the land title.

CID spokesperson, SP Vincent Ssekate, said he had not been briefed about the matter. However, an investigating officer who preferred anonymity since he not authorized to speak to the press said a case file LPPU GEF 359/2018 had been opened and MrOdongu would be arraigned before court to answer charges of fraud and obtaining money by false pretence.

Detectives searched MrOdongu’s office and his homes in Kyanja, Kisasi and Namugongo. A police source said MrOdongu explained that he put a caveat one the land because the land title was stolen by one of his family members.

MsTushemerirwe said she would not accept the accused to refund her money because she paid for the land and she is ready to develop it. The complainant’s relative, Ms Sharon Natukunda, said they have an approved plan to develop the land but they were being held by MrOdongu’s failure to release the land title.