Oulanyah: Corruption Has Been Institutionalised in Uganda

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In short
The Deputy Speaker of Parliament Jacob Oulanyah has said corruption has been institutionalised in Uganda with many people now glorifying those involved.

The Deputy Speaker of Parliament Jacob Oulanyah has said corruption has been institutionalised in Uganda with many people now glorifying those involved.

Oulanyah was today, Wednesday speaking during a meeting with a delegation from Slovenia visiting Uganda. He was responding to questions on how Uganda is dealing with corruption.

According to Oulanyah, unlike the ordinary level where someone participates in a minimal level of corruption, the vice has now been made official with influential people paying huge amounts of money to get contracts and business.

He, however, says some expatriates from other countries are responsible for corruption in Uganda as they offer huge deals and sums of monies in form of bribes to get access to "certain things".

"There are some people from some countries, one specific country that I cannot mention because of diplomatic reasons, that come with a lot of money in Uganda to get huge contracts, they give you money and you cannot refuse, but next time you ask for it by yourself," Oulanyah said.

He says corruption has become a social problem, with the society entirely glorifying the corrupt and condemning people who actually work hard.

"People call you a failure, and even parents pressurise their children after they complete school comparing them with their peers who have built houses and bought cars. So you are a failure if you are not corrupt since corruption is fashionable," he added.

Oulanyah says people should be critical in asking for sources of money instead of receiving it. He says even churches have fallen victims as they receive huge amounts of money in terms of donation from young men and women in their congregation without questioning where they get the money.

He says the fight against corruption is a campaign that should be taken seriously. He however notes that, though the corruption levels are high, some people have taken a strong stand against it. He commended Rwanda's President Paul Kagame, for instance, for taking a strong stand on corruption, stating that Kagame imprisoned his own nephew who was found to be corrupt.

Out of 176 countries, Uganda ranked 151 on the list of corrupt countries in the Corruption Perception Index (CPI) Annual report conducted by Transparency International.The report which was launched in 2017 showed that Uganda had scored 25% in fighting corruption, dropping 12 places from its position in 2015.


About the author

Alex Otto
“Journalism that changes lives is my goal,” Alex Otto has said on more than one occasion. That is his career’s guiding principle. Has been since he was a radio journalist in the northern Ugandan town of Gulu in 2009.

Otto passionately believes his journalism should bring to the fore the voices of the voiceless like the shooting victims of Apaa. Otto tries in his journalism to ask tough questions to those in positions of authority.

Based in the Kampala bureau, Otto is especially interested in covering agriculture, politics, education, human rights, crime, environment and business. He has reported intensively on the post-conflict situation in northern Uganda.

A URN staff member since 2014, Otto previously worked with The Observer Newspaper from 2012 to 2013 and later the Institute for War and Peace Reporting IWPR based in Gulu.

He was the URN Gulu bureau chief 2014-2016.